Rudaí 23 #Thing6 Reflective practice

I’m progressing a lot more slowly than I wanted to, but this is largely due to factors beyond my control rather than a lack of enthusiasm, so am continuing to make my progress slowly.

This is one of the big plus points of a course like this, the flexibility to fit it around life rather than feeling it has passed you by. From reading others blogs this seems to be a common theme. Everyone is getting what they need from the course, for some a refresher, some an introduction and others a chance to reflect and evaluate their current practice.

What I am getting out of it most is staying connected to blogging and finding the time to do a little updating and reflection. Also it’s a refreshing break from thinking about house buying (ugh!).

Rudaí 23 #Thing5: Online Networks

Where would we be without online networks?!

I love that online networks make communication so easy, news, (personal and international) can travel so fast to so many people. I can find out about something happening around me (such as, why the rail station I was in just got evacuated) immediately thanks to twitter; and I can keep myself entertained (and maybe even educated) whilst waiting for a bus. What I don’t get on so well with is the effort it can take to prevent feeds from becoming almost entirely noise, and I don’t always have the time I would like to keep up with the things I am interested in. I do use custom lists on twitter and Facebook to help.

I run the social media accounts for my library, and it has all the benefits you might expect, such as providing an additional way to connect and meeting the expectation that we will have a presence. It’s great for new resource discovery, keeping up with trends, and “market awareness”, you know, being nosey about what is happening in other libraries. After having the account for a few months another great benefit became clear, and that is what a great tool for reflection it is. It’s so easy to see what has been happening all in one place. It also helps to raise our profile, we once even made it into the local news!

From a professional perspective, Twitter can be an amazing tool for CPD.  I can get an overview of current issues and viewpoints, discover new things and share ideas. I haven’t found other online networks as useful from a personal professional viewpoint. I still very much prefer to keep Twitter for professional networking and communication, and Facebook for personal use, it’s nice to have some separation, like going home at the end of the working day.

Rudaí 23 #Thing 4: Google

I am a fan of google.

I use Google+ to keep in touch with friends and organise events and I don’t know where I would be without Gmail and google calendar and docs to keep track of everything.

It can go too far though, and I was pleased when it was announced recently that YouTube would once again be separate from Google+. I didn’t like that comments I made on a friends Google + post used to end up on YouTube. Some separation please!

I don’t use hangouts much but it has been useful for meeting with long distance friends to organise things “in person” and to see family occasionally. The difficulty is resisting the urge to gurn at whoever is on the other side, or is that just me? 😉

Rudaí 23 Thing 3:Your Professional Brand

My “professional brand” is something I struggle with, and getting a comfortable balance between what’s public and what’s private can be difficult. It’s something that requires some thought, and no doubt some reading. I sometimes find it useful to ask others for their views about my strengths and experience as it is can be a lot easier to see what things you could be doing, rather than how much you have already achieved.

I have a LinkedIn account which I do keep up to date but I know could definitely be better, I think it will just be a case of continually improving over time. Most people I have ever worked with either can’t see the point of, or dislike LinkedIn which has resulted in me having a network full of non-information professionals. I am keen to get more involved in groups as I can see that this would make it a lot more useful to me.

Benefits I have noticed from using LinkedIn:

  • It encourages keeping a record of employment and professional skills up to date
  • I can access it anywhere if I need to refer to something
  • Useful for future career goals – as I can see others employment routes and training

I’d be very interested in any tips others would like to share about what made Linked In work better for them.

How and Why I became a librarian #rudai23

Thing 2: Writing Your First Blog Post

Sometimes when I have bumped into people from my childhood and mentioned what I do, they get a happy misty eyed look and say something like “Oh, you always wanted to be a librarian!”. Except, that’s not really how I remember it.

There was certainly a stage where I (like many people) expressed how nice it must be to work in a library, no doubt with “all those books” and the “peace and quiet” (hilarious, I know). What I most remember wanting to be though, was an artist, a caterer, a journalist, a biomedical scientist, and a psychologist. I even did a psychology degree.

After completing my degree, I got a temporary job at Waterstone’s as a bookseller and stayed there for six and a half years. I reached a turning point and took my love of books and helping people find what they are looking for, and got my first library job.

I loved it.

Years later, I have worked in academic and public libraries and I’m a qualified librarian with a Masters in Information and Library management. I see a lot more librarianship in my future : )