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Code of the Road

Things you need to know about the DHFS culture, expectations and protocol to be successful.

  1. Mission - The centerpiece of the DHFS mission is constant improvement. You are expected to be a proactive agent of this process.
  2. Diversity - You are expected to be an agent of organizational diversity. This includes using your position and influence to confront, teach, and learn about issues of diversity.
  3. Gossip - Don't involve yourself in gossip while at work. If you have issues with another staff person talk with that person. Do not talk about that person to someone else.
  4. Anticipate - Learn to anticipate and see what needs to be accomplished before someone tells you to do it.
  5. Team Player - You are expected to be a team player by supporting and assisting efforts of co-workers as you/they work to fulfill the mission of the Division of Housing and Food Service. Remember, "We win and lose as a team."
  6. Communicate - You are expected to communicate across unit lines promoting a friendly community setting within the Division. Anyone at any level is welcome and expected to talk with any one at any level.
  7. Student Success - Know that your work in this organization, regardless of what you do, helps students to be successful at The University of Texas at Austin.
  8. Ask Questions - When unsure about something, you are expected to take the lead, ask questions and then take the initiative in determining and reaching a solution.
  9. Floyd - The Executive Director of DHFS prefers to be called Floyd on all occasions. Don't refer to managers as the "bosses."
  10. On Time - DHFS meetings start and end on time. Try to arrive early.
  11. No Whining - DHFS does not accept whining and negativism, rather you are expected to study situations and present do-able options/solutions.
  12. Manage by Walking - Don't be alarmed by DHFS supervisors and managers talking with customers and staff in your area. Managers are expected to be physically in and around their areas observing and getting feedback to improve the organization.
  13. Residence Halls are called "residence halls" and not "dormitories."
  14. Wellness - Wellness lifestyles and programs are strongly encouraged for all staff.
  15. Pick Up Trash - Remember, students live and eat here. Keep your area attractive and inviting and don't wait for someone else to pick up trash.
  16. Customer service - Remember who pays your salary. They are not always right, but they always have the right to be heard. Treating our customers with respect will go a long way toward gaining acceptance of an unpopular decision.
  17. Credibility - If you tell someone what you are going to do or say, then that's what you are expected to do and to say.
  18. Honesty - Don't report what you think your supervisor wants to hear. Tell the exact story.
  19. Ethics - Ask yourself how whatever you are doing would make you look if everyone knew about it. Never make staff feel they should "do as you say, not as you do." There is no right way to do the wrong thing.
  20. Confidentiality - If you have confidential information, you should keep it confidential. However, you are required by law to disclose certain information, such as harassment. You should inform staff of this responsibility before they give you confidential information.
  21. Communication - With good information people can make good decisions. Keep staff and students informed and in the know. Close the loop on all communication.
  22. Delegation - You will delegate many tasks and decisions. In return, you must take responsibility and keep your supervisor informed. A rule-of-thumb is if there is anything your boss could hear about from another source, he/she should hear it from you first.
  23. No upward delegation - Don't ask your supervisor to do things that you should do yourself.
  24. Let managers manage and let supervisors supervise - Don't get too involved in the day to day operations. Let supervisors and staff do the job we hired them to do.
  25. Admit mistakes - Along with delegation will come some mistakes. Admit mistakes and learn from them. Don't wear your feelings on your sleeve. You will be offered constructive advice. Learn to make the most of it and move on.
  26. Take chances - Don't let the fear of making mistakes reduce your ability to take chances and make changes. "If you always do what you always did, you will always get what you always got."
  27. Agree to disagree - We will not always agree and you will not always agree with your peers, staff or supervisor. Disagreement is healthy in the proper setting. Never tell staff/students that you are doing something that "I don't agree with, but my supervisor said to do it."
  28. Timely response - You are expected to meet deadlines and respond to issues as fast as possible. If you are going to need something by a certain time or date inform others, with specifics, ahead of time.





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