Tuesday, 15 May 2012

CILIP New Professionals Day 2012 part 2

During the mid-part of the day we attended three workshops, pre-selected from a choice of nine, you can see a full list of the workshops offered here.

Continuing Professional Development Adventures. What? Why? How?

The first I attended was Continuing Professional Development Adventures from Emma Illingworth (wearing some amazing printed leggings).

We started off with a discussion of the barriers and benefits to CPD, Emma asked us all to jot down an idea for each on a post-it (there were a lot of post-its in evidence at the various workshops, is CILIP sponsored by Post-it?) and we stuck them to some sheets on the wall. Time and cost won by a landslide victory over any other barriers, and the benefits were a more even mix of developing new skills, widening horizons and gaining employment.

Emma gave us a guide for how to plan a CPD journey
  • What do I want/need to learn
  • What will I do to achieve this
  • What resources or support will I need
  • What will my success criteria be
And gave us an exhaustive list of resources we could use to help plan and achieve our CPD goals, which you can access in her slide show presentation here.

The session finished with a brief look at reflection (an integral part of most CPD activities) and I really liked her suggested reflection questions;
  • What did I do
  • Why did I do it
  • What did I learn
  • How have/will I use what I've learnt

 CyberLibrarians: Information management jobs in the digital age

The second session was CyberLibrarians by Lisa Hutchins and Richard Hawkins, I was really looking forward to this particular one, I had no idea what to expect as it was so different to the type of work I do day to day (which was primarily why I picked it!) but I felt really inspired by the end of it.

The session began with Lisa and Richard explaining their backgrounds and the type of work they do. They defined Information Architecture as 'the underlying structure of a website or e-resource, the way in which its content is organised and navigated'.

One aspect of this type of work is how common freelance work is. Lisa described how the cons (job instability and lack of security) weighed up against the pros (opportunities to work on exciting projects), and some of the personality traits required such as, patience, the ability to see the big and small picture, people skills and hearing what people don't say as much as what they do. She also described how you have to be mentally tough enough to market yourself and the value of what you do.

The take home message was;
"An entrepreneur is someone who is a taker of opportunities, apply an entrepreneurial spirit to your career".

The full Prezi for the workshop is available here.

Have you tried logging out and then in again?

After lunch (the much anticipated burritos!), the final workshop I went to was on managing e-resources with Simon Barron and Abby Barker (who was wearing amazing red high heel shoes, Abby that is, not Simon!).

Courtesy of @usernametaken10

After explaining the winding ways in which they became e-resource librarians they started explaining what it is they actually do, including some of the types of queries they tend to deal with (and a clip from The IT Crowd to illustrate).

Then it was our turn to have a go at answering some (apparently real life) queries. I think what came across most was that rather than having some kind of amazing tech abilities, what an e-resources librarian really needs is good people skills.

Check out the full presentation here.

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