How we built the Framework

Using a stratified sample[1] approach, our data gathering process consisted of a large number of confidential structured interviews. Our approach aligned with recognised best practice which helped us to ensure that we could deliver a framework which had both the granularity and the validity for the purposes outlined above.

Over 150 interviews were held with staff of all grades, totalling approximately 280 hours’ worth of detailed conversations:


Visionary (10%) interviews took place with key leaders to understand the future vision and how the Behavioural Framework would enable cultural change aligned to our future strategy;

Repertory Grid (60%) structured interviews were conducted with line managers to assess those behaviours that frequently led to success within the team;

Critical Incident (40%) structured interviews took place on a one-to-one basis with all levels of staff which focused on successful achievement of tasks/projects/particular piece of work                                                                                                                               

Following the interviews, a small team spent a week analysing the content, identifying the key themes and behaviours that were woven through the responses – an exercise which resulted in an array of over 2000 Post It Notes being created as part of the review process. The emergent themes then determined the constructs which formed the basis of our behavioural competencies.

Working closely with an Occupational Psychologist throughout the process, we took all the necessary recommended steps to ensure our approach to the design phase was in line with best practice and would ultimately deliver us with a behavioural framework that would be both meaningful and useful.

In the second phase of the initial project we created a draft framework built around the key behaviours identified during the analysis phase, which was then subject to extensive consultation and validation. We validated our results through questionnaire feedback and focus groups to confirm we had accurately captured what is involved, and the positive behaviours required, in delivering a professional services role to a high standard, here at the University of Glasgow.

I would therefore like to take this opportunity to say a huge thank you to all the staff involved in the project for identifying those behaviours that will help support colleagues to be successful and engaged, through sharing expectations around how we work. The framework will enable individuals, teams and leaders to set clear expectations, support development and have quality conversations with staff to enable them to be their best and support us in making Glasgow a fantastic place to work.

Lesley Cummings
Director of Performance and Reward 

[1] A stratified sample is one that ensures that subgroups (strata) of a given population are each adequately represented within the whole sample population of a research study. For example, our sample was divided into job family subgroups by grade e.g. Ops family grades 1-5, T&S family grades 6-8, MPA family grades 9-10.