UCL Human Resources


Grade 1 to 4

Supporting Indicators and Steps to Development

The Supporting Indicators and Steps to Development provide examples of typical behaviours that support or hinder the Ways of Working, and ideas for development..

Use these to support activities such as recruitment, appraisals and personal/ professional development. See more below or download the pdf document. 

Personal Excellence - Supporting Indicators

Click to find steps to development.

Being helpful and courteous in dealing with colleagues, students and staff

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Personal Excellence:

  • Showing inconsistency in helping different groups or at different times.

  • Giving the impression of rudeness or unhelpfulness in interactions with others.

Steps towards development:

  • How are you coming across? Are you perceived to not treat all colleagues, students, staff and partners equally and fairly? How might you think about changing your approach?

  • Reflect on your approach and ask for feedback from your manager and people you work with on a regular basis.

  • Sometimes we give the impression of being rude or unhelpful without meaning to, for example if we are busy, or shy, or distracted. Consider how you might be giving this impression and what you might do to change it.

Dealing appropriately with poor behaviour from all colleagues, students and staff and partners

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Personal Excellence:

  • Not escalating and reporting important issues, making them difficult to resolve.

  • Responding in anger or frustration to rudeness or abuse directed at you.

Steps towards development:

  • Think about how you tend to react to discourteous or rude behaviour from others. Are you more likely to experience those reactions when interacting with specific groups?

  • Ask others in similar roles for advice and consider how you might prepare yourself in advance for any incidents. Make sure that you can remember the details of any incident, and report it, letting your supervisor know what happened. Write down or record details as soon as possible after any incident.

Performing duties in a punctual and timely way.

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Personal Excellence:

  • Being consistently late without offering any explanation.

  • Being consistently late without showing a commitment to changing.

Steps towards development:

  • Review your journey to work, pinpointing issues that might impact your arrival time. Commit to making changes that are within your own control, and discuss any issues that are out of your control with your manager.

  • Look on LinkedIn Learning for tips on time-keeping.

  • Are you usually able to perform your duties within the expected timeframe? If not, why not? What is getting in the way for you? Try to recognise what is stopping you from doing what you need to on time, and think about how you could make things work better. Discuss with your manager or supervisor.

Being able to recognise and report bullying, harassment and discriminatory behaviour.

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Personal Excellence:

  • Not recognising potentially bullying, harassment and discriminatory behaviour in others.

  • Contributing to bullying, harassment and discriminatory behaviour.

Steps towards development:

  • Recognise patterns of behaviour that disadvantage specific groups of colleagues, staff, students and partners. Observe your own behaviours – have you ever contributed to a situation that inadvertently disadvantages another colleague? Think about how you can positively influence in large or small ways within your team and model a consistent approach.

  • Speak out against bullying, harassment and discriminatory behaviour. If you do not feel confident to do this with your manager then talk to your HR expert, or go through UCL channels such as ‘Report + Support’ and ‘Full Stop’ which provide an opportunity to report incidents anonymously if you do not feel safe reporting it in your name.

Identifying where you will need support to complete your work.

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Personal Excellence:

  • Not recognising who and/ or when you should ask for help.

  • Being over-confident, and going too far with the work before asking for help or direction.

Steps towards development:

  • Try to plan your work in advance so that you can see where clashes or difficulties may arise. Chunk out the work into set time frames, so you can see how much you can achieve in a certain period. Practice this technique and your estimates will become more accurate and instinctive.

  • Ensure that you are considering your own well-being and reaching out for help when you need it. An early indication that you need support is in everyone’s best interest.

  • Learn to recognise any signs of stress and take early action to discuss resilience and coping strategies with your manager.

Acting in accordance with UCL’s commitments to inclusion and well-being.

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Personal Excellence:

  • Not understanding what is meant by inclusion or well-being.

  • Understanding what is meant by inclusion and well-being but not reflecting it in actions.

Steps towards development:

  • UCL is London’s Global University. Our colleagues, students and partners come from all over the globe. Building on our collective knowledge and expertise requires us all to treat each other with respect and fairness. This ensures we can all contribute our best ideas and excel at work. To achieve this, each of us needs to develop our awareness of and commitment to (inter) cultural sensitivity and agility.

  • Upskill yourself on what UCL means by inclusion. Spend some time learning about UCL’s commitment to inclusion and speak to your HR expert if in doubt.  Raise any concerns and make suggestions where you feel your team can improve their response to issues relating to inclusion or well-being. Use UCL channels such as ‘Report + Support’ and ‘Full Stop’ if your concerns are not being addressed

Working Together - Supporting Indicators

Click to find steps to development.

Being willing to take up training in the systems and procedures that you need to do your job.

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Working Together:

  • Showing no interest in training or learning.

  • Attending training but not then applying learnings in activities.

Steps towards development:

  • What do you need to do to do your job effectively? Familiarise yourself with the UCL Learning and Development Portfolio and LinkedIn Learning and discuss options with your manager. What would help you develop personally or professionally?

  • When you attend training or do online learning, how do you make sure that you use what you have learned in your job and tasks? Have a pre and post meeting with your manager to discuss your objectives, learnings and how to use the learning in your job. Write down some ideas about how you can take the learning forward and refer back to it a few weeks after the training. Did you achieve what you wanted to?

Able to work as a part of a diverse team.

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Working Together:

  • Preferring to work in isolation so that your work suffers.

  • Spend an excessive time in socialising that does not add value to your work.

Steps towards development:

Being able to work as part of a team is very important for good outcomes and a pleasant working environment. Here are a few characteristics of good team members - how do you do on these? Are there any you need to develop more? Discuss with your manager:

  • Honest and straightforward with the rest of the team
  • Does their fair share of the work.
  • Reliable, doing what they say they will
  • Fair – not playing favourites
  • Complements others – and appreciates their contributions
  • Communicates positively and effectively – getting messages across clearly


Following instructions in order to carry out tasks

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Working Together:

  • Consistently failing to listen to instructions.

  • Carrying out instructions in a limited way.

Steps towards development:

  • How do you ensure that you follow instructions effectively? Consider using different techniques. Try writing instructions down, or recording them in order to remember them better. Ask to have the instructions repeated if you do not follow the first time. If they are too complicated or unclear, ask for further explanation, or written instruction.

  • How do you know if you have fully carried out the instructions? Ask for feedback from your manager or colleagues.


Communicating effectively with your team and those around you.

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Working Together:

  • Only feeling comfortable in communicating with certain people.

  • Not communicating effectively such that it causes issues in how the team completes work.

Steps towards development:

  • A good team member appreciates individual differences and communicates well with everyone. These are essential parts of working together, and impact the whole team’s effectiveness.

  • You may be more comfortable with some people than others, but part of your responsibility is to make sure you can communicate widely to lots of different people. If you find this difficult, think about why. Challenge yourself to go out of your comfort zone by communicating with different people. Think about how this impacts your work, and try to develop the skill. Look at LinkedIn Learning for tips on effective communication, or seek out training.

Asking for help or more information when you need it.

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Working Together:

  • Hesitating to ask for help or information even though you are unclear about what should be done.

  • Trying to do things too fast without the proper instruction or information.

Steps towards development:

  • It’s important that you are really clear on what you are meant to do, and that you understand how to complete the task. If you are unclear you should ask for more information and support. It can waste everyone’s time, including your own, if you do something incorrectly. If you are being left constantly with too little instruction then seek advice from another colleague or manager.

Achieving our Mission - Supporting Indicators

Click to find steps to development.

Making sure you are clear on how to prioritise your work.

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Achieving our Mission:

  • Not asking for help or guidance in prioritising.

  • Not thinking about how you might prioritise tasks.

Steps towards development:

  • Think about situations where you may have been asked to do different work tasks at similar times. How did you find the experience?

  • Start to think in advance about how things may need to be prioritised in upcoming work and make a plan to deal with it. Speak to your manager about how this might be done, and different options to do it.

  • Talk to your colleagues about how they have managed to prioritise their work successfully and learn from their examples.

Demonstrating a desire for things to work well.

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Achieving our Mission:

  • Not seeming to care if things work out well or not.

  • Not recognising how you have contributed to the success or failure of the work.

Steps towards development:

  • Your work is a key part of the success of the area you work in, supporting some of the important work that UCL does.

  • How you perform your job is likely to impact people and processes across the institution. Recognising and taking pride in this contribution is important. How can you bring this to life in your work? Think about the connections between your work and the wider work of the department or institutions and find ways to show others that you care about your job.

Thinking about how things could work better and making helpful suggestions.

Examples of behaviours that may hinder Achieving our Mission:

  • Seeming happy for things to just carry on as they always have without thinking about improvements or positive change.

  • Making frequent suggestions for change in a negative way.

Steps towards development:

  • As this person doing the job, you are in the right place to see what is going on and to think about how things could be improved. It can sometimes be easy to make observations in a negative way when you see things not working well. How can you turn this into positive suggestions for change? Who do you talk to about any ideas you have? Talk to your colleagues and your manager about how your suggestions could be practically used to benefit everyone.