You are not an average librarian.
Librarianship is more than just a paycheck to you. Much more.
You volunteer for committees and project teams because you are excited about your work and want to make a difference.
You know you can make a difference to your community in a plugged-in, always-on world.
And one way you do that is by embracing things digital, especially when it helps you to do your job better.
But not everyone you work with cares about their work the same way you do. 🙁
For example, when you suggest a really quick tip that would help a colleague improve their digital practice, they tell you why they can’t do it that way.
Or when you ask the resident expert why a subscription database searches the way it does, they confess they don’t know. And don’t suggest how you might find the answer.
You know that these simple examples are on their own, inconsequential. They aren’t going to have a significant impact on your work or the difference you can make to your community.
But over time they grow into a whole world of lost opportunities that if not checked, will slowly erode your faith in librarianship.
And you would be devastated if that happened.
You want to learn how to embrace things digital AND flourish at work. Writing ‘AND’ in capital letters is important because you’re not interested in an either/or situation. You want both.
I want you to have both.
Motivation is the most powerful emotion that you can bring to your work.
It energises, directs and sustains your behaviour. Motivation is a key indicator of how well you do your job, and how well you flourish.
Unfortunately most libraries prefer that you take the emotion out of your work and your professional development.
Instead professional development is about ticking the boxes. It is a rational approach to plug the gaps (often to fix weaknesses) and depending on the size of your library’s budget and the number of opportunities available, some people miss out.
Not because they weren’t motivated.
But because the boxes were already ticked.
Rational decisions based on ‘use your head’ and not ‘follow your heart’.
However you have a head AND a heart for a reason. They both help in their own way, so why favour one over the other? I don’t think you should. I believe you should make the most of both; because you deserve to flourish.
The approach we take in librarianship to all things digital (or digital literacy) should also be more holistic.
Digital literacy is not just about tech skills (that was last century’s thinking). Today, digital literacy relies less on your abilities and more on your approach towards digital things.1
For example asking someone to connect your work calendar to your phone despite having step-by-step instructions, is not an approach that will improve your digital literacy.
Digital literacy is also not confined to work practices. It involves how you make decisions, solve problems and learn best, at work, home and online.
For example if you enjoy taking risks in life, you are likely to approach digital things in the same way. If you take change in stride, you are also likely to follow the same pattern online.
I encourage you to step forward and embrace a holistic approach to digital literacy.
You can learn, grow, and shine brighter each day by optimising what comes naturally to you. I can help you with this.
Through The Library Boss I will not only share digital literacy skills, tips, and tricks with you. I will also help you flourish at work with grace and flair.
In the beginning, there will be monthly blog posts filled with both information and inspiration.
Further down the track, I’d like to offer coaching services to help you overcome the specific challenges you face in making this stuff work for you and your team.
And in-between I’m hoping there will be more opportunities to create something wonderful.
But I can't do this on my own. I need your help too.
I need you to share your digital literacy skills, tips and tricks with others. Share what you have learned so others may learn from you.
You may feel you have nothing worth sharing. Many librarians do.
But the greatest value of any kind of learning happens when you share your ideas and stories.
My dream is to guide a small supportive community of librarians from around the world who like yourself, want to flourish at work, and who also want to reach out and share what they know with others.
What is the best way for you begin?
Start by identifying your approach towards things digital - your digital super-power.
As I mentioned previously your approach is like a pattern. If you enjoy taking risks in life, you are likely to approach digital things in the same way. If you take change in stride, you are also likely to follow the same pattern online.
Your digital super-power isn't an expression of your knowledge, skill or abilities. Instead it reflects the pattern most often repeated in the fabric of you. #TheLibraryBoss
The What’s your digital super-power? quiz will give you the clarity and confidence to flourish with grace and flair (especially with digital things).
It's fun to do - there’s only 10 multi-choice questions - and it will also reinforce that technical skills aren’t your only useful qualities when it comes to embracing things digital AND flourishing at work.
Then when you have taken the quiz, invite others to do it too.
And once you've done that you'll have something in common to share. 🙂
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