Sunday, December 4, 2011
Thursday, November 17, 2011
Rosanne Torpey was an excellent presenter and I found her program very useful for circulation.
We need to be proactive before reactive. This helped me to recognize everyday stressors and to take a deep breath in stressful situations.
Know when to speak and when to listen. (Biggy for me so my husband tells me)
Demonstrate appropriate response if a person has weapons.
I recommended Rosanne to my daughter to give to her supervisor for a workshop.
Monday, November 7, 2011
Thursday, November 3, 2011
Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
I had the opportunity at the end of September to attend the Polaris Users Group (PUG) conference in Dallas, TX. Day one was dedicated to Polaris Staff updating the 300 or so attendees on new bits and pieces that are in development for future releases. Day two was for presentations from the user group.
General tidbits from Day 1
- Polaris is working with Muse Global on a federated search product
- Work is underway to make the upgrade process faster and shorter
- Receipt footers can be customized at the branch level - so everyone can advertise their own programs on their printed receipts - pretty cool.
- The 4.1 mobile PAC will support enriched content (book covers etc.)
- In 4.1 we will be able to pick the fields that we want displayed on search results
- We will be able to do a checkout limit (if we choose to) on associated items. Example - limit of 5 movies which could be any combination of DVD and Blu-ray discs
- The acquisitions module will be able to split the FY - duplicate the current year and roll over the new FY
- Regarding RDA - Polaris is waiting to see what happens with efforts to replace marc. It's all well and good to be ready, but until the "container" that is marc is changed, the new data fields won't be as meaningful as they could be...this was good to hear. I've been excited about RDA and Maria keeps telling me that it doesn't make sense with marc, but I needed to hear it again, in a bigger room. ;-)
- The system requirements for 4.1 will be the same as for 4.0 (we will likely go live on 4.0 and then do an upgrade to 4.1 within the first 6 months or so). However, version 4.2 which is slated for January 2013, will not work with Windows XP. Another good excuse to upgrade computers!
Date: 25 October 2011
Location: Clear Spring Library
Summary: Although the "role-playing" scenarios presented in this session were based in our work environment, the library, the content of this fast-moving three hour workshop dealt with staying safe in a changing world.
We learned skills necessary to manage difficult situations; being pro-active, not reactive. Without being cognizant of our response, we can sometimes escalate a problem. We were taught verbal and non-verbal intervention skills to use. We learned the importance of shaking up our old thinking patterns and to see the situation from a different perspective. In summary, we should project to others that we care...great customer service advice.
The workshop ended with our playing a game which visually demonstrated that within our daily tasks, fragile situations may arise in which we may have to use our skills to de-escalate.
I recommend this life skills workshop to all.
No matter where the situation, we do not know what the other person has been going through.Usually problem patrons bring their problems with them and we are sitting targets because we are available and they figure that we have been trained to be nice to them.
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Don't have time to spend on the website? That's fine, too! Here's a brief blub about what Pop!Tech is: Pop!Tech (the organization) is "...a community of innovators working together to expand the edge of change." Then logic tells us at the Pop!Tech conference is a gathering of about 500 curious minds who all come together in Camden, Maine to expose themselves to the brilliant ideas and work and progress the aforementioned innovators are creating and to get a peek at what the edge of change actually looks like.
You can view all of the videos from the conference on the Pop!Tech site so, I'm not going to go into specifics about each of the presenters but I will share with you my top ten a-ha moments. This post will have five and then I'll have another five in my next post.
A-Ha #10: If the world is re-balancing, so too are libraries and our balance - our scale - has more than two pans. In fact, it probably looks more like a mobile with at least four arms: the library itself, the users, the funders, and the technology.
A-Ha #9: Poverty is not due to a lack of resources but to a lack of distribution. What does this mean for the info-poor and/or the illiterate (and when I say illiterate I mean it in other ways besides being able to read and write, like being computer/technologically literate)? As libraries are we really doing the best we can with disseminating information - within and without? Might this become an even bigger role for libraries in the future? I predict that yes, we will need to work harder and more creatively with distributing information in the future - staying with the most main-stream ways will not be sufficient because if the info-poor had access to those avenues then they wouldn't be info-poor in the first place, would they?
A-Ha #8: We need to start considering how we can reverse the journey our library ancestors first set out on so many years ago. I believe their primary objective is no longer the primary objective of libraries today. The world they were living in is not the same world we are living in today. Libraries mean something different now than they did a couple hundred years ago. Just because we're a part of a long wagon train doesn't mean we can't steer our own horse in a different direction.
A-Ha #7: I believe a strong library future is one where the consumer/client/patron is at the center of the library both as a provider and receiver of library goods and services. Think of the idea of crowd sourcing standard library-staff functions like shelving, cataloging, teaching classes and web design. Think about it - when you go to a book store, Barnes and Noble, whatever, and you see a book out of place or a DVD out of place on the shelf, do you just leave it there or do you put it where it will most likely be found - in its proper place? I put it in the right place. Imagine if our library patrons experience the same feeling when they were browsing our collections.
A-Ha #6: We need to harmonize our usage policies across all types of libraries. What this means is that all libraries, no matter what kind (academic, public, school, etc), share the same vision of utilization among all customers/clients/patrons. If I can check out a library book at library A for 30 days then I know I can check out a library book at library B for 30 days also. If I can renew an item 2 times at library B then I know I can renew an item 2 times at library A and library C. Does that make sense?
Stay tuned...bigger and better a-ha!s to come later in the week.
Monday, October 24, 2011
Thursday, October 6, 2011
“Why you telling me this?” was the first words out of my 12 year olds mouth! Just like Heather Higgins said a teenager would react-“What’s it got to do with me?” The evening after attending the "Giving a Fish a Bath" workshop, I briefly shared with my three teenage sons the topic of the teen brain. Upon hearing the overview of the adolescent brain, and without hesitation, all three boys immediately agreed that they now have an excellent excuse for their sometimes wacky behavior! Being informed with information like this helps us as individuals, as families, as volunteers in the schools, and as assistants working in public places as well as other situations. Understanding why a teen behaves as she does helps us to support her at home, at school, and at the library. My group found The Survival Game to be challenging-it was difficult to come up with good decisions and solutions as adults. How hard it must be to do so with a confused adolescent brain. I think I could use a whole morning of working through the challenging scenarios that teens may experience. Coming up with socially acceptable responses and reactions is difficult to do without losing face.
Wednesday, October 5, 2011
Understanding why a teen behaves as he does, goes a long way into supporting & serving them in a library setting (and living with them!)
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
I hope I can take some of her ideas and use them in dealing with teens who come into my library and at least understand the teens' behavior better. Their frontal lobes won't be done developing until the teens reach their mid twenties. The teenage brain does not work like a miniature adult brain!
Sunday, October 2, 2011
Friday, September 30, 2011
Thursday, September 29, 2011
informative and entertaining. "Reading is fundamental" states Mr. Gannon. Key points to ask customers when doing reader's advisory are: What was the last good book you read? and What did you like about it? Mr. Gannon demonstrated how to look at a book cover and determine the type of genre. For example, he could tell whether the book is a cozy or hard-boiled mystery.
We divided into three groups and completed exercises to help reinforce the key points of his presentation. It was a great workshop!
Wednesday, September 28, 2011
The workshop is enhanced by the participants' own experiences.
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
The first question to ask a patron is 'What did you read lately that you liked, and what did you like about it?' From there the patron can be advised on other books that may have a similar theme, characters or settings. If we don't ask the right questions, it will be harder to assist a patron in finding a match. Of course, since we are a library and not a bookstore, patrons can take home many books for free! No risk to them!
Mr. Gannon showed us how to look at a book cover and determine what genre it might be. He went over romances, mysteries, science fiction, fantasy, and general fiction. I learned the subtle differences that a genre may have to distinguish between cozy and graphic subjects.
I enjoyed the slide show that was presented. I wonder why our library doesn't carry the book that he talked about called 'The Nympho Librarian'! Mr Gannon used humor and let us interact with scenarios he constructed to help us learn how to help patrons find books to read. He is a great presenter and I was glad to have attended this workshop.
The workshop provided tips for helping library patrons to find a good book to read when we find ourselves out of our element. For instance, we might like to read science fiction, but Gannon pointed out that by using the cover art and clues on the jacket, we can recommend books that our customers will like.
Additionally, four key points were mentioned:
1. Reading is fundamental--read one of what you don't usually read for familiarity
2. Read professional reviews
3. Ask the customer, "What is the last good book you read and why did you like it?"
4. Realize that customers will get it wrong, so be prepared to read between the lines when details are provided.
Overall, what made the workshop delightful was Mr. Gannon himself, whose sense of humor peppered the presentation to leave us energized and informed.
1. Reading is Fundamental- ( you have to read some of the books- don't try to fake it)
2. Professional Reading - ( Look in BookList and Kirkus Reviews for write ups- also become familiar with the book reviews in People and Entertainment Weekly- these are the books patrons will be asking about)
3. 64,000 Question- What was the last good book you read and why did you like it?- ( Simple question but it will tell you what kind of books they like)
4. Never believe the customer or patron- ( they will never remember the title or author right and you will have to become part detective to come to the correct answer.)
We also learned many hints as to what a cover can tell you- Nuns are always cozy mysteries and blood and bones on cover will most certainly be a gruesome thriller.
I never realized how much information could be obtained by just looking closer at the cover. Wonderful workshop and I hightly recommend this to anyone - pure learning enjoyment!
Friday, September 23, 2011
The highlights of this presentation were the ideas that adolescence is lasting longer as far as brain development is concerned (as late as age 25) and that this period in life is one of two high periods of vulnerability to the brain—the other period being from birth to age five.
Hormones and brain development changes are proliferating during the teen years and it is the responsibility of adults to guide teenagers toward healthy means of satisfying their needs. For example, exercise, music, and positive social connections are much healthier ways of increasing serotonin and dopamine than using illegal drugs.
The following strategies were offered as methods for guiding teens toward healthy behaviors: teach teens about their unique brains, understand that their behavior should not be taken personally—it’s just adolescence, help teens discover sense and meaning in the behaviors you would like for them to use, adopt the language of the brain, teach empathy and build strong communication skills, give teens opportunities to practice real-world skills (how to avoid peer pressure, etc.), and remind teens to remember the fundamentals—exercise, nutrition, sleep, and coping skills.
Thursday, September 22, 2011
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Here are the 3 most poignant take-aways:
Most learning happens socially; we just don't realize it until it's not there.
What this means is that those informal water-cooler chats, those discussions you have in the car on the long rides on I-68 and I-70, and those beer- or wine-fueled happy hour talks you enjoy with your colleagues is where the majority of learning occurs. Why is this? Because it's natural. It's organic. It's human nature. But too often, or so some may have the impression, these types of social conversations are frowned upon as a waste of company time. According to the research (references to follow), these conversations are extremely valuable to the growth and social health of the library/business/school/etc and its talent (meaning us -the employees).
If we force social learning, it'll stop or it'll go under the radar.
So, you read this post and you do some research on your own and you think, wow! Everyone should be doing this especially Colleague X who doesn't talk to anyone. Stop right there. Forcing someone to engage in social learning endeavors (i.e. mandatory water cooler chats) will not have the desired effect. Basically, if folks aren't already talking, chances aren't they aren't ever going to. This rings true with the opposite situation - you notice one day what great ideas come from a long drive home from a meeting and so you decide to make every Thursday afternoon Go-For-An-Idea-Ride time and you force your staff or colleagues into taking mandated hour-long drives in the hopes of mimicking that one experience you had. Ain't gonna happen. Moral of the story: let it be, let it become, and don't impose any structure onto it.
Social media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc) are just tools that help take the social learning to a bigger level.
Just because you have a Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc account and you have 5,000 friends, 3,000 followers, and 7,654 connections, it doesn't mean you're learning socially. It's not how big your social media network is, it's how you use it and how regularly you use it. How often have you posted a problem to your social media networks to get your friends to help you out? Have you used social media to help answer a patron's reference question when you were struggling? I used Facebook on Monday to find a new home for my dog and I did it in a matter of minutes. Minutes. You've heard of out-sourcing, right? Now start thinking about crowd-sourcing. I like to think of the idea of using social media to enhance social learning as the notion of crowd-sourced problem solving, or crowd-sourced perspective getting.
References for today's webinar can be found at: http://www.delicious.com/jbo27712/SocLrnTruth
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
Friday, September 2, 2011
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Friday, August 26, 2011
It was good to learn how to set the tabs, it used to drive me nuts trying to set them. We also learned a number of ways to copy & paste. And those function keys, they actually do have a function! Anyway, I would highly recommend this class for anyone who is either a newby or experienced with Microsoft Word.
Tuesday, August 9, 2011
The first interesting workshop I attended was called, Reading Tectonics with Katie Dunneback and she presented a well-rounded overview of the impact ebooks have had on publishing as well as on libraries. Here are some juicy tidbits:
- Who reads ebooks = reverse bell curve. This means you either don't read them at all or you read them all the time. There is little middle ground right now.
- There's been a tremendous rise in self-published titles. Does this put a new spin on being able to judge a book by its publisher?
- Learning how to work with ebooks is a two-pronged staff: one one prong we have the technology side and on the other prong we have the customer service side. My two cents: essentially all staff need to be trainers themselves in order to provide good customer service when working with these technologies. They need to be able to tailor their help with each customer because each one is going to be coming to them with different levels of experience and comfort. Having one "this is how we do it" spiel for ebooks is not going to be good enough.
- Become a student of Twitter. If you want to see how it works and how it works well and who uses it well you gotta study, study, study.
- Follow more people than you think you should. I'm not sure I'm sold on the value of this yet but then again, maybe I'm following the wrong people.
- Follow locally. For example, I did a search on Hagerstown and have started following a few more people and businesses who are from the area. I've since added folks and businesses from Allegany county and Garrett county too!
- Follow celebrities. I'm not sure I'm sold on the value of this either because there are few celebs I'm even interested in but, the presenter says you can learn from them on how to craft good tweets. Yes, there is an art to effective tweeting!
- Participate in hashtag trends like A Day in the Life of a Librarian #libday7
Monday, August 8, 2011
- Do not start with Classification and Cataloging!
- Don't get too discouraged after you struggle through learning about DDS and LCC to find out it's all being replaced by a new system - RDA.
- Text books are still very expensive and if you're lucky, you may find some used ones. Now you can also sell them back to the book store or online.
- Get support from current class mates, work mates who have also attended MLS classes and join the SIG group. (These resources become invaluable when you do your paper on Mary B!)
- Join professional associations like MLA and ALA. They offer great resources and affordable reduced student rates.
- Be kind to yourself and don't forget about your family.
- Do your best and accept that perfection is an illusion!
Wednesday, August 3, 2011
You can opt-in or opt-out of Overdrive WIN. If you opt-in, you can choose to have it search all available ebook titles or just your own or some middle of the road. If a patron want it now (WIN) they can purchase the ebook from an affiliate link off WIN then library gets a cut. WIN is a series of updates.
The biggest part is Downloading Overdrive/Library content to the Amazon Kindle.
· All current books are kindle compatible
· All Kindle apps are also supported
· Will benefit from whisper net sync technology
· No extra logins
· Checkout takes patron to amazon site after title selection on library/overdrive site
· Overdrive has Increased capacity for simultaneous access on overdrive website
- Completely new help resource center with sharable links
- Patron driven acquisitions –“Recommend to library”
- Enhanced searching
- Bisac subject heading
- Market place skins
- Format consolidation -buy once and have it in multiple formats
- Multiple cart support -drag and drop
- Advantage reporting
- Advanced download standing order plans
- Use Smart list to order
- Innovation in browsing
- Format options. –“Format Wizard” coming soon
- Kindle library lending
- Ebooks samples rolling out now
- Improved user interface and accessibility
- Quick search
- new Help site www.overdrive.com/learningcenter
Patron Driven Acquisitions – “Recommend to Library”
Can automatically create lists of patron recommendations or can automatically purchase after set number of patron requests for a title. The Library sets budget.
Format Consolidation- we buy the eBook and our patrons can get it in the format they want it in. JV thinks they will do on the fly conversion for patrons. (no more buying a epub and a pdf version, we buy 1 copy and it gets converted for partons)
It shaping up to be a busy fall so my advice is get comfortable with overdrive and downloading content asap.
In September, the Kindle support starts and in October Pottermore comes out.
Monday, August 1, 2011
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Last week I attended a class in Front End Development of Drupal as well as Capital Camp DC, which was a conference with about 275+ techies who learned all things Drupal!
3 things I learned:
- Drupal has some of the coolest websites out there and it's fairly simple to use. Here are some of the sites across the world, including many of our government websites: http://drupal.org/success-stories | http://www.whitehouse.gov | http://www.capitalcamp.org
- The White House uses the American public to help with its site as "contributors"! It's about "open-government" and Drupal is an "open-source" product where everyone contributes to the product.
- Because Drupal has a large community of contributing developers, the content continues to get robust with each module. Anytime the module needs to be fixed, many developers help to fix it so that it will work for everyone. A great example of how everyone contributes to the success of the product. It doesn't belong to any one person, it belongs to all of us.
1 thing I squared away:
- Drupal is the way to go for a Content Management Systems. I've always been kind of scared of open-source because you have to rely on documentation from other developers. But after attending the conference, I realized that everyone is willing to help. It's not about one person, it's about the overall success of Drupal. I connected with a few people and all of them are ready to dive in and help me to make it happen. Yay!!
Things I need to work on:
- Getting Drupal 7 installed and working on our server. I currently have Drupal 6 running on our server, but it's always been something that I struggled figuring out. Turns out that's what they fixed in 7 so now the new version is easy, peazy! Or so, that's what it looks like. They demo'd putting a site up for a Book store in 20 minutes with images, a checkout and navigation.
I can do this, I really can do this! :)
Saturday, July 16, 2011
- I met Nancy Pearl!!! Nancy Pearl, people!!! She's like the rockstar of library world!!! I met her first at her book signing, though sadly I did not win her autographed copy of Book Lust to Go. I met her a second time when she facilitated the session I attended called "Libraries and Bookstores: Strange Bedfellows" where library and bookstore leaders discussed joint partnerships in several communities that have benefited both industries.
- Librarians can go anywhere and do anything! I met a lot of really great librarians who work in some truly unexpected places; from a librarian who worked for Sears.com (her job was to make up those handy dandy categories that you use for finding items when you're shopping online) to a Canadian librarian who traveled around with rural Native tribes studying how local library services are utilized by tribal populations. There really are opportunities for librarians in every industry.
- It's true, I do not like crawfish.
- Library technology is a very exciting industry, similar in many ways to designing things for space or time travel. The technology, the machinery, and the innovation that takes place make our jobs easier and sleeker, but also helps us to remain relevant in people's daily lives by addressing their technological and social needs. From book vending machines (think Redbox with books) to mobile access libraries to machines that turn pages for you to chairs that look like they are straight out of the Death Star, library technology is full of the wild and wonderful. Even my husband was amazed by some of the high-tech stuff when he was wandering around the exhibit hall on his own.
- Bourbon Street smells terrible, but not terrible enough to keep the crowds away.
- How many times have patrons made comments about how difficult it is to find things because we don't organize our shelves like Barnes & Noble? There is a new way of cataloging called the C3 system that combines the best of bookstore classification systems with a more updated version of call numbers that make it faster and easier for patrons and staff to find items on their shelves. The Markham Public Library in Canada has debuted the system to great success and the patrons seem happy too. Hearing about innovations like these definitely makes you stop to think about how many systems are being used today that are really obsolete.
- The social media wave is definitely washing over libraries everywhere. Most of the Q & A sessions were conducted via Twitter!! Librarians discussed the pros and cons of staff marketing via Facebook and MySpace. Sessions presenters always included links to where to where they could be found online. The conversations almost always continued after every session, not only in the rooms or in the hallways, but online! Everyone was tweeting! The ALA tag #ALA11 was even briefly trending on Twitter. That's what happens when you put 11,000 librarians in a building together and let them use smart phones!
- Food will never taste as good again...
Thursday, June 30, 2011
1. If you're given a 2hr slot to present a program be sure to fill that 2hr slot. I attended a program that was supposed to be on the unmined potential of ebooks but the presenter only had 20 minutes worth of material. She would have liked for the remainder of the time to be spent on walking folks through the installation process of a freely available ebook-creator software but no one was told to bring laptops so, we left at 8:22AM only to hunt down a more fulfilling program. The ebook creator wasn't all that great and I know of better ones so, I'm not even going to mention it here.
2. There's no such thing as over-communicating. Not to be confused with TMI (too much information) which can be a cause for concern in any work environment, communicating broadly and in a timely manner (to the point of repeating to some degree) can be a good thing and a sign of a healthy team. One way to practice good over communication skills is to have daily 10 minute huddles (or 5 minutes of genius as they are sometimes called). Do these at a set time every day with whoever is available and do it standing up. What to share during these huddles - whatever you got going on that day or recap what happened the previous day. Just share, share, share. Be sure to jot down some notes and post them in a central location for everyone to see - esp. if they weren't able to attend the huddle.
3. Venting, although cathartic, is not productive. Be a good listener but help the ventee to move forward with a solution. Or if you're the person venting try to be aware of the fact that you are venting and ask a colleague for help with solving the solution if you feel stuck. You don't have to go it alone.
4. When delivering a conference program accept in advance that there will be plugged and unplugged learners. The challenge is catering to them both!
5. Information literacy instructors in academic libraries and public trainers in public libraries are two birds of a feather that have been disguising themselves to look different from each other. They need to join forces instead of drawing their lines deeper in the sand. I'm working on putting together a conference program on this very topic. We'll see how it goes. If you're interested in co-presenting with me just give me a shout!
6. Can't afford to bring a big name presenter physically to your library? Try to convince them to Skype their presentation. Be sure to set up a room on your end that has a reliable and high speed internet connection and a web cam so that the presenter can see the attendees when they ask questions.
7. We should strive to humbitious (humbly ambitious).
8. Have writer's block or a brainstorming block? Start throwing out your worst ideas ever and it'll get the wheels turning again, not to mention some great ideas!
Monday, May 23, 2011
Sponsored by: Student Interest Group (SIG) and MLA
MLA/DLA Annual Conference
Friday, May 6, 2011
Written by: Amanda Bena, Allegany County Library System
This year at the annual Maryland Library Association/Delware Library Association conference in Ocean City, Maryland, the Student Interest Group sponsored a session "Getting the Library Job You Want! Secrets from Library Leaders" featuring a panel of experts in a Q & A style format to get some answers about the hiring process for students and library school graduates. Darrell Batson, Director of the Frederick County Public Libraries; Dr. Lucy Holman, Director of the Langsdale Library at the University of Baltimore; and Terri Schell, Senior Administrator in Human Resources at the Harford County Public Library all provided a broad range of expertise and advice for those of us searching for that perfect library position.
Because our panelists came from a variety of libraries and backgrounds, what they had to say was rich in detail and perspective. Much of the advice is also applicable to those working outside the realm of librarianship with general tips for crafting resumes and strategies for interviewing well. Some common themes started appearing early on in the discussion which might be helpful to summarize here. If you're interested in a question by question summary, please visit the Student Interest Group page on the MLA website here: http://www.mdlib.org/divisions/sig/default.asp and click on "Program Notes".
- Experience is key. Get it however you can. Whether it's an internship, an externship, volunteerism, or actual paid employment, experience is what will get you in the door and prove to employers that you can do the job.
- Craft your story. MLS's are a dime a dozen these days, so while it's important to acknowledge that you do indeed have the professional training necessary to perform the duties, it's just as important to focus on the skills, experiences, and specializations that make you unique. Employers want to know who you are, so make sure that your story is clearly visible on your application materials.
- Bring something to the table. Employers want to know what you can do for their organization, so be prepared to showcase your special skills and unique abilities with specific examples of how you can be of value to them. Were you a teacher in a past life? Took a summer marketing seminar? Use those experiences to offer a perspective or a specialty that they may not have even known they wanted.
- Embrace change. It's not secret that the role of the librarian is drastically different from what it was twenty years ago. New generations of librarians are making leaps and bounds into areas often thought to be outside the realm of librarianship. Employers are looking for candidates who can adapt in a fast-paced and constantly changing arena. Yet, adaptation is not just about surviving, it's also about thriving, especially in times of economic uncertainty. Show your willingness to innovate and create. Demonstrate your initiative and resolve. Be open. Be flexible.
- Use common sense. Whether it's knowing when not to answer the phone, or understanding that the refreshments are for everyone, not just you, use your head and remain professional in all situations, whether in person or not. The real interview process begins with the first contact between you and the organization, so treat everyone with respect and put your best face forward at all times.
- Be honest. Remember, you'll have to work with these people every day, so it won't take long for them to figure out that you don't actually speak fluent Finnish, or that you aren't really interested in young adult services. Use what you have to showcase your best self, but don't embellish with experiences or attributes that you don't have.
- Find the right fit. The organization wants you to be happy just as much as you do, so do your research before applying to make sure that it's the kind of place where you can see yourself growing professionally. Check out their website. Read their mission statement. If it's not the right organizational culture, acknowledge that and move on. You don't want to begin a new job fighting against the cultural current. There are many different types of libraries and many different types of organizational cultures out there. You'll know when you find the right one.
- The 3 T's: tailor, transfer, and translate. Tailor your resume and cover letter to reflect the values and mission of the organization to which you're applying. Read the job ad carefully and make your own skill-set transfer to the specific job. Translate your experiences and activities, even if they are outside the library realm, to reflect the your value as an employee and your commitment to the profession.
- Choose early and choose wisely. As a library school student, it is imperative that you consider your professional goals early. Choose your coursework based on what kind of librarian you want to be and what kind of library you want to work for. Follow that path, as it's built to support you and your goals. Don't try to hope that you fit in anywhere.
- Experience is experience is experience. Use what you have and what you know. Even if your current repertoire of experience seems unrelated to the library profession, chances are it's not. Make it work for you. Libraries are constantly changing and the demands of the profession often require skill-sets not found in library school programs. Outside experience is valuable, gives you a different perspective, and makes you more interesting to an organization if you can relate it to the profession.
- Remain relevant. Show you commitment to the profession by keeping up with library trends, joining professional organizations, attending trainings and workshops, and getting involved in projects. Use current terminology. Stay up to date on emerging technologies, even if you don't use them, read up on them. Know what's going on.
- Be passionate! Love what you do. If you are excited about the job and the possibilities of working in an organization, that passion will translate into your interview. Employers are looking for candidates who are excited about the future of libraries, so let your passion show.
Thursday, May 12, 2011
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
3 Things I learned :
- You can make something from anything! – Session “Just the Facts” – the title had absolutely nothing that would make you think that we would be making crafts, but that’s what we did. We made a book from 2 sheets of scrapbooking paper and a rubber band! It looked pretty fancy and yet so simple. Yes, it was the highlight for me because aside from LOVING code, I’m a crafty kind of person so I love to be creative. Let’s just say that this little project may end up being an innovative addition to a gift one day!
- PowerPoint really is for everyone! – Session “PowerPoint doesn’t have to suck” – I think the best thing that I learned is that Flickr is a great resource for “Creative Commons” images. The search feature on Flickr makes it easy to find great images.
- A site called “Lifehacker” really is a good site! – Session “Keep it Simple Stupid” – this was a great session with a lot of great sites for virtually every need.
1 thing I squared away:
- Most of what we do here at libraries is because of the creative thinking and resolve that so many have that allows us to do more with less. We all have budget constraints, staffing issues, etc., but we manage to do the best that we can with what we have. There are a ton of “free” resources available and we make the best of what we can get our hands on. Coming from a corporate environment where I was used to buying everything, I realize that just as much can be done, if not more, by using “open source” products. There are really a lot of great developers out there who are more than willing to share their knowledge for a small fee. It’s amazing to see all of the library websites and catalog systems that have implemented “open source” products to build great things!
Things I need to work on:
- Finding and utilizing more “open source” resources. There are tons out there, but now with the resources that I picked up from MLA, I’ll be able to research what’s out there. Lifehacker has a wealth of information. WOW! It’s like a playground where I say “ooohhh, ahhhh” just reading through some of the neat stuff out there. Best “bookmark” that I’ve done in a while!
My first adventure at MLA was a great experience. Definitely worth the trip and the bonus weather was the icing on the cake! Can't wait for MLA 2012!
Friday, April 15, 2011
Thursday, March 31, 2011
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
The program suggested a number of software solutions from relatively cheap - Snagit - to wondrous - Captivate.
I realized that since I would be creating small tutorials, the question of hosting doesn't apply, but for a e-Learning package like Captivate then that question would need to be considered. What was also discussed was sticking with software families - a screen capture software program written by the same company as your video producer. And I know I should look at San Francisco Public Library's process for creating their tutorials.
Unrelated, somewhat. I now understand why Julie has a small white board by her desk. Who needs Captivate when you have a white board, some artistic talent and a camera?
Friday, March 25, 2011
Event: Computers in Libraries
Location: Washington, DC
Date: March 23, 2011
Program Description: When the Kansas library community participated in a statewide 23 Things program in 2010, it opened up a new way to look at learning virtually, especially for encouraging librarians to continue their learning after the structured program's end. through their Passport to Learning, Braum and Hickey show how to enrich the virtual learning experience. Burns looks at how 23 Things has evolved, its strenghts, its challenges and the "what's next."
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Event: Computers in Libraries (CIL)
Date: March 23, 2011
Location: Washington, DC
Program description: Hear the experiences of a public library using Second Life and an academic library using Facebook to manage courses and engage learners. Paterek discusses how a public library uses different locations and avatars in 3D simulation to facilitate learning and provides examples of virtual classrooms using PowerPoint presentations, live simulations, chat, computer voice applications, and virtual reality. Czech went to the students at Wayne State University with a Facebook group to manage a Productive Tools course.
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Thursday, February 24, 2011
Date Attended: February 16, 2011
Staff Member: Tracy Carroll
Training Format: Webinar
Some of the newly revised American with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations take effect on March 14, 2011, and more are in the works. The webinar reviewed the upcoming changes and provided links and material for libraries to review. The notes with links are provided in this document - ADA Update.
3 Things I learned:
- While dogs are the most common service animals for people with disabilities, a miniature horse also qualifies as a service dog! Who knew! Don't be surprised if you see a miniature horse service animal @ your library! Dogs are the only animals recognized by the ADA, but miniature horses must also be recognized as a service animal if the size and weight can be accommodated. Localities may have different laws that recognize other animals, so always check local ordinances to see what qualifies as a service animal.
- The new standard for shelving in "new buildings" is now 48 inches, it was previously 54 inches. That standard goes into effect next year for buildings that are renovated or started after March 15, 2012.
- Didn't know that you couldn't ask the patron the nature of their disability or if the service animal is certified. Service animals don't need to be certified because they can be self-taught by the individual for their needs.
1 Thing I squared away:
- There are several sites that can check websites for compatibility for screen readers and the current resource that I use to check our websites for compatibility is one of the best ones available - WAVE.
Something I need to work on:
- Finding ways to modify "open source" code to make sure it compatible if I use it. Much of the "open source" code (which is free code that web developers post), works great but doesn't always comply with formatting for screen compatibility.
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Date attended: Jan. 19, 2011 @ 1PM
Staff member: Julie Zamostny
Provided for free by Training Magazine Network
You can watch the recorded webinar by creating a free account!
Visit www.changeanything.com to start creating your own personal success.
Three Things I Learned:
One Thing I Squared Away:
Some Things I Still Need to Investigate and/or Work On: