Ombudsperson

A Problem? How to Solve It!

Have a problem and don’t know what to do?

First... Organize your thoughts. Identify your problem in one to five statements. Then identify facts or information supporting your concern. Finally, identify what might be acceptable solutions as you see the problem right now.
Second... Talk to the person most directly involved with your problem. State your concern clearly and concisely. Don’t blame, but do ask for assistance in resolving your concern. Seek clarification and understanding of both sides of the issue. Listen. Perhaps new information will be provided which creates a different perspective on your problem or the resolutions you had considered acceptable. Make every effort to solve the problem at this level.

But what if that doesn't work?

First... Reorganize your thoughts. Is it still a problem or do you just not like the outcome? If it is still a problem, then define the problem, facts and acceptable solutions to include the new information you gathered from your first meeting.
Second... Make an appointment to meet with the immediate supervisor of the first person you talked with regarding your problem. Again, share your concern clearly and concisely. If your problem is a personal one with a friend or colleague, you may want to contact someone who can assist you by mediating the issue for you and the other person.

Remember...
Your purpose is to solve your problem. Avoid creating new problems. Make every effort to arrive at a mutually acceptable solution.

Need more ideas to help you solve your problem?

Refer to a UNK Handbook for help on who to contact or processes available for solving problems.
Refer to the UNK catalog or other policy manuals to gain understanding of the University’s position on your concern if the problem relates to UNK policies, procedures or practices.
Ask a University representative to refer you to the appropriate office or person to get assistance in resolving your problem.
Call the Office of the Ombudsperson to get assistance in resolving your problem or in referring you to the appropriate office or person to get your problem resolved.

Remember...
Problems are inevitable; however, you are capable of solving your problems. Each concern affords you an opportunity to build skills in problem-solving, negotiation, and conflict resolution. Learn who can help and work with that person to resolve your problem.

However, if you find yourself saying...
Now what do I do? I feel like I am going in circles. Something should be done!

Then...
Call the Ombudsperson for help. Your concerns may be directed to the Ombudsperson by appointment, walk-in, letter, telephone or e-mail.