Inspirational leadership is crucial for court success and excellence. Due to the specific professional character of a court, court leaders should develop a statement of what the court stands for and what it can be. The Supreme Court has published its visionary and aspirational strategic statement, as shown below, that sets out its goal and purpose, as well as the attributes it will demonstrate.
To be an outstanding superior court
To safeguard and maintain the rule of law, and to ensure:-
- equal access to justice;
- fairness, impartiality and independence in decision-making;
- processes that are transparent, timely and certain;
- accountability for the Court’s use of public resources; and
- the highest standards of competence and personal integrity.
We aim to achieve our goal and purpose through the following attributes:-
Striving for excellence in decision-making and the performance of all of our work. We aim to provide leadership to the Victorian legal system, and to be the dispute resolution forum of choice.
Equality (before the law)
Guaranteeing due process and equal protection of the law to all those before the Court, including in criminal cases through the application of the principle of ’innocent until proven guilty’.
Making it as straightforward as practicable to gain entry to the legal process, ensuring cases are heard quickly and that the Court’s processes and services are not only technically correct, but also delivered in an accurate, user-friendly and inclusive manner.
Fairness and impartiality
Setting and maintaining the standards by which the Court conducts itself as well as consistency in decision-making and the application or interpretation of legislation. The Court aims to be and to appear to be impartial and fair in the performance of its functions.
Independence of decision-making and competence
The ability of every judicial officer in the Court to make decisions based solely on a thorough understanding of the applicable law and the facts of the case.
Integrity and transparency
Maintaining a focus on the propriety of the process, the decision and the decision maker, as well as being accountable for our actions, being honest in our dealings and maintaining good systems, procedures and records that are available for audit. The Court conducts its hearings in public and is open to anyone who wishes to observe its proceedings.
Timeliness and efficiency
Efficiently using the time required to properly obtain, present and weigh the evidence, law, and arguments; avoiding unreasonable delay and managing expectations with appropriate resources and skills. We strive to perform all of our functions efficiently and to dispose of cases in a timely manner. As justice delayed is justice denied, we aim to deliver judgments within a reasonable time.
Certainty and clarity
Providing clearly defined decision-making processes, applying the law consistently and communicating reasons for decisions clearly. The language we use in Court and in our judgments is intended to be clear and easy to understand, not only by legal practitioners but also parties.
Innovation and change
Being a leader in innovation in court processes, and adapting to changes in technology, business processes and community expectations in relation to service delivery, while at the same time respecting traditions that continue to serve the Court and the community well.
Courtesy and respect
Treating with courtesy and respect all persons coming before the Court, whether as parties, witnesses, victims of crime, interpreters, counsel, solicitors, jurors or members of the public. We aim to conduct proceedings with tolerance, patience and courtesy, and to be sensitive towards persons dealing with the Court, including victims of crime and unsuccessful parties in civil proceedings.