Initial tip via Resource Shelf.
An Open Weblog Dedicated to Library Support Staff
"Staffing Libraries since 537 B.C."
1. Take advantage of every opportunity. I started my career as a hairstylist. At conferences I am often asked how I become a speaker, author, and executive speech coach? By noticing and using every chance that turned up. Opportunity doesn't knock just once. It knocks all the time, though you may not recognize the sound. One technique is to learn from successful people by finding out how they achieved their success.
2. Start by asking questions. Successful people will share their knowledge and experiences with you if you ask good questions that stimulate their thinking and responses. The quality of the information you receive depends on the quality of your questions. The key to connecting with others is conversation, and the secret of conversation is to ask the right questions. A conversation can lead to a relationship, and a nurtured relationship can produce amazing results.
3. Dedicate yourself. Two questions you should ask yourself on a fairly regular basis are, "What can I do to contribute to my profession--to my employer and my professional association?" and "How can I be professionally accountable?" When you can do this, you'll get so much more than you give.
4. Use stories. Be inventive in selling yourself and your profession. Learn to network, one on one, by using memorable stories. Sometimes, it's appropriate to fade into the background. Most of us are shy in some situations. But, to be professionally accountable, you must be able to stand out and speak up. When you are in any situation where you're meeting the public, how do you introduce yourself? When people ask what you do, can you tell them in a way that will stick in their minds? I challenge you to come up with a one-sentence way of presenting yourself and your profession so that people will never forget. Create a vivid,visual picture of your job, its challenges and triumphs. People will remember the picture you create in their minds, rather than your words.
5. Develop your persuasive powers. Being professionally accountable means knowing how to influence people. President Dwight Eisenhower, said, "Leadership is the ability to decide what has to be done and then getting people to want to do it." How do you influence people? One of my clients is Horst Schulze, president of the Ritz Carlton hotels. He advises prospective employees,"We are all ladies and gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen. Our guests pay our prices to have an experience, and it is your job to be part of that experience. You will never say, 'That is not in my job description,' and you will never bring your own problems to work." Obviously, this works at the Ritz Carlton. Do you have a similar motivator for yourself, your colleagues,and your fellow professionals? Are you persuasive in representing my company,department or association in public? More from Fripp.com
Perhaps the ultimate in careless spending is paying for something you can get free. And no place offers more valuable free stuff than your local public library.
A library card gives access to a plethora of freebies bought by your tax dollars, many you probably don't know about.
"In essence, you've prepaid for all of these services, so you may as well get good use out of them," said Jennifer Owens, adult services manager at the Fremont Public Library in Mundelein.
If you haven't visited a public library in a while, you may be surprised by the breadth of lending materials and services available. Of course, libraries offer books and magazines, which alone would save you about $140 a year on average, according to government consumer expenditure statistics. Read more...
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What will the information world be like in the year 2014? This highly polished, thoughtful piece gives us one compelling possibility. Highly recommended. People will be talking about this. From the Library Autonomous Zone
Personnel at the circulation desk in the library aren't just there to check the library's physical materials out and back in, and to collect fines on overdue materials. They, too, are trained to address reference queries from all the patrons. They have an excellent grasp of the library's resources and have also been trained to locate information of all sorts and provide you with access to it. While these people may be swamped with a line of patrons waiting to be taken care of, they may also politely refer you to another librarian at the reference desk. They have a very tough job too! In Praise of Library Personnel, George G. Morgan, Ancestry.com
Bloody hell, could you imagine writing a blog dedicated to your job? Of course, Librarian is a comedy euphemism that I like to use for ladylovers. Perhaps then, the Library Supporter blog is dating site for gay women? Get it bookmarked, folks! Get a Life!I've studied the public perception of library staff for awhile, but this is a new one. ;)
Marking a departure from the solitary life of reading and writing, about 20 independent literary bloggers announced last week that they will begin working together in hopes of drawing readers to books they feel deserve more attention.
Calling themselves the Litblog Co-Op, the effort includes the sites the Elegant Variation, Moorishgirl, Rake's Progress and Confessions of an Idiosyncratic Mind, all of which will continue to operate separately, the bloggers say.
Key to the effort is the Read This! campaign they've created, in which five of the bloggers will each nominate a title he or she thinks deserves readers' attention, then the co-op will vote for one to promote jointly. The first title (four will be selected each year) will be announced May 15 on the group's Web site, lbc.typepad.com. Associated Press via The Wichita Eagle
One of the things I like about the public library is that many of the questions we answer are relevant to people’s lives. The information they are looking for is important to them; it matters. Ideas are also important, but these questions move past ideas and into reality; practical application of ideas, not just speculation. Read more...:)
The very nature of library work predisposes us to burnout. A normal library workday can be described as a continuous round of interruptions. When demands for our services (including reference questions and reader's advisory) roll in, we must refocus ourselves to find the answers and set aside whatever else we have been working on. These constant breaks in our day interrupt the flow of our concentration and make it hard for us to complete our tasks. The repetitive nature of library work induces monotony; boredom can easily set in by doing things over and over again, making us prime candidates for burnout. From Running on Empty: Dealing with Burnout in the Library Setting by Tim and Zahra M. Baird, published at LIScareer.comThe authors go on to suggest that burnout is an extreme consequence of workplace stress and that investing time in oneself outside of work may ease the symptoms.
1. You get a direct line into the thinking of important people in the field, think Jonathan Schwartz or Tim Bray (Sun), Miguel de Icaza or Nat Friedman (Novell), Bob Sutor or Alan Brown (IBM), Don Box or Robert Scoble (Microsoft), Adam Bosworth (Google), Dan Gillmor (San Jose Mercury News), Jon Udell (Infoworld), Steve Gillmor, Dave Winer, Doc Searls, and many others. It's unfiltered and in their own words. This means a lot of typos and misspellings (my blog being exhibit A of that), but also an up to the minute take, in their own words.The article also has an excellent tutorial on setting up a Bloglines feed like the one we use here.
2. Reading from a news aggregator is a *much* quicker way of reading news. For example, when I log in in the morning and hop over to Bloglines, in one interface I can see what around 70 people, along with news outlets like the NY Times, Washington Post, and Boston Globe, or groups like Java.net, the Mono Project, Google, or GNOME have to say. Sure beats visiting the hundred or so websites individually to see if they might have some updated content to read.
3. The group mind knows things that one mind can't. There's no better example of this than Slashdot, where a post will bring thousands of different opinions and facts together in one place. That sort of group aggregate information assembly is very difficult if not impossible for one person, but trivial for the blogging world.
4. You get a much better picture of the individuals involved; what they're working on, what their concerns are, sometimes even what their favorite restaurant is. It's a different way to build relationships. Not a replacement for personal interaction, of course, but one that has its place and has a lot more scale to it. If you're a PR/AR person trying to get my attention, for example, it might help to know something about me.
5. You heard it here first. Blogs very commonly have announcements and news long before the mainstream media has heard, digested, and written it up. It's a nice complimentary source for the mainstream media, and it's a highly effective tap into the pulse of important news and announcements. From How to Get Into Blogs, 101 at tecosystems.
We want to remind folks that this document is intended to serve as a best practice guide developed by a community of electronic and audiovisual catalogers. Like most best practice guides, it has been developed because existing resources have not fully addressed the needs of working catalogers. More at CatalogablogDRAFT - Source of Title Note for Internet Resources
In 2002, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation awarded the Online Computer Library Center (OCLC) a three-year grant to build a portal for public libraries and other organizations that provide open access to information. Building on the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's five-year-old U.S. Library Program, which has provided over 40,000 computers with Internet access to more than 10,000 libraries across the United States and Canada, WebJunction is the work of five organizations, led by OCLC.Don't know enough about searching the web to help your patrons? Would you like to find out how to troubleshoot your PC so when you call the Systems Room you won't sound like an idiot? Try the free, webased courses over at The Learning Center. Perhaps you need a little boost? Try All Aboard!, WebJunction's Community Center, where you can share ideas, brainstorm, ask questions... or just say three words.
We can expect support staff to be used increasingly in both new and reconfigured roles, in many cases performing tasks previously considered to be the exclusive province of librarians. In addition to increased responsibility for the direct provision of information to patrons, support staff will assume increased supervisory responsibility, including the hiring, training and evaluation of staff; complex support roles in computer technology and applications; and an ever greater responsibility for cataloging, acquisition, document delivery, and interlibrary loan. It is likely that eventually support staff will be granted primary responsibility for the day-to-day operations of our libraries. Read more...
The history of support staff helps us know who we are and where we came from and goes back to the roots and evolution of the library itself. Generally, libraries have existed since records were first kept. The first libraries may well have been established by Stone Age cave people. One cave person's thoughts and experiences, painted on a cave wall, were considered worthy of saving, to keep and share with neighbors and future cave people.
As these expressions and records evolved from pictures to clay tablets to printed letters on paper, thoughts became portable and collectible. These collections took a formal arrangement in the record rooms or archives in the ancient world of Babylonia and Assyria. By the 14th century B.C., Egyptian manuscripts referred to early libraries and by 537 B.C. Athens could claim the establishment of the first public library.
Technological advances, like the printing press and movable type, helped create more books for more people. At the same time these books became available, a parallel development of educational institutions helped create a literate society. Read more...