Libraries, the universe and everything


Things I’ve been reading – June 2012
July 2, 2012, 11:58
Filed under: Chartership, CPD, Reading

Continuing the series of selected items from my online reading… Marketing for the extremely shy I particularly like Dorie’s definition of the difference between sales and marketing – “marketing is what you do to make clients come to you, while sales is about you reaching out to them and closing the deal” – which I think is just as applicable to library activity as in a more commercial environment.

The five-step plan to get your mojo back Sensible and achievable advice for reinvigorating your approach.

Let’s be less productive This makes a lot of sense to me (and, frankly, who wouldn’t be beguiled by the prospect of a 21 hour working week?!) – it’s just too easy to obsess about doing things without proper consideration of the sacrifices that get made along the way.

Library search tools. Could we make them harder to use? The scenario described here brings back painful memories of my own university library inductions, and even now I’m a card-carrying librarian I’m not sure I’ve ever done a nested Boolean search myself. In my experience, library catalogues can often be more than a bit awkward to search (don’t get me started), but how we choose to conduct user training is something that should be much easier to control.

Manage risk like a Royal Marine Plan for the expected, train for the unexpected (or something like that, anyway!).

Shifting focus, or what I learned at LILAC I was particuarly interested to see a slightly different approach to reflection in this post: an event write-up based around three recollections, two insights and one question.

Knowledge management and the simple stick “Hit it with the simple stick” is my new mantra.

The 5 ways you stink at LinkedIn Some great LinkedIn advice.

Musings on reasons for placemark entries and blogs not up-dated… I must admit that one of my blogging bugbears is when people put up one of those “oh yeah, haven’t updated for a while, been busy” type posts. We’re all busy, and I have far too many blogs I want to keep up with as it is, without this kind of vacuous self-indulgent nonsense getting in the way. If you can’t or don’t want to maintain your blog then just mothball it. I’m sure I’m not alone in thinking that I’d much prefer to read a blog which has rarely-updated but quality content as opposed to one which posts rubbish twelve times a week. ; This post, on the other hand, I really enjoyed.

In defence of LinkedIn I also like LinkedIn. I particularly appreciate having an online space for purely professional information, where I can be found looking competent and to which I can direct non-library contacts who may not be interested in my other online activities. I don’t need it to be another social network – for me it’s a bit like a value-added collection of business cards. Although I haven’t used it as a resource for preparing a CV or job application yet I’m sure I will in the future. And thanks to Ian’s post I’ve added an article I recently wrote to my page, which I wouldn’t have thought to do otherwise!

7 lessons learned while being The Man If this isn’t completely inspirational leadership then I don’t know what is.

What will they say?” I don’t really have much to say about this, other than I completely agree and think this is a really sensible mantra to live by.

What I learned from the ‘Homeless Hotspots’ twitter furor Interesting case study around the social media storm (and handling therof) sparked by the Homeless Hotspots initiative – an example of good crisis management.

A conference survival guide for the shy and terrified I particularly like the 2nd tip.

Time and tide reflection A model for annual reflection.

How I cured my imposter syndrome Take control of your inner imposter!

Are we in the middle of a lost generation of librarians? I’m really not sure that I think about this one. It does seem that supply of new library graduates is rather exceeding demand for qualified librarians at present, especially with closures happening all over the place. That said, there does also seem to be a range of jobs being advertised, so maybe some people have too fixed an idea of what they want to do and are missing opportunities as a result? (I do appreciate that it can be tremendously difficult to get any kind of job though.) I guess library schools do have a responsiblity to prepare their students for the harsh realities of life in the workplace, and remind them that they may not get their dream job quickly or easily, but might have to work their way to it by a circuitous route (Ned’s analogy of the career climbing wall springs to mind here).

Honest tips for wannabe archivists… Leading perfectly on from the previous post, this has some seriously good advice.

All hat, no cattle: a call for libraries to transform before it’s too late A really powerful addition to the library e-books discussions.

10 top tips to build momentum in online communities Some more quality advice from Ned.

Don’t shush me, I’m tweeting the speaker I was mortified to discover that a tweeter was shushed at an event I chaired recently, and the shusher was subsequently vituperated over the medium they were attempting to suppress – not a situation I think anyone involved would have wanted. Every dinosaur his tar pit, indeed.

Search and social: how the two will soon become one I’m torn between thinking this sounds amazing, and concerned that (if properly applied) this kind of technology could genuinely replace a lot of the services libraries currently provide.

LIKE Ideas conference – the business of social media, part 1 and part 2 A great write-up of an event which I not only enjoyed myself but was also involved with organising. Sadly I can’t claim credit for much of the success, I was very much a supporting player, but have gained a lot of knowledge for use in future. In terms of the event itself, I had fun livetweeting parts of the day (a skill which I’m finally starting to improve), talked to lots of interesting people, caught up with some old friends, made some new ones, and expanded my social media horizons too!

I don’t know whether I’ll be able to put together a reading post in July, as I’m going to be rather busy preparing for our move to New York at the end of the month. I’m definitely planning to continue this series though, as I find it a really useful way of bringing together highlights from my online reading, so I’ll be back once we’re moved and settled.

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2 Comments so far
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Cheers Emma – glad you found the time – some good stuff.

Comment by africker

Thanks Alan

Comment by Emma Davidson




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