Are librarians actually experts? If so, what are we expert at? What is our expertise?
There are plenty of articles and studies on information literacy in our professional literature. However, these almost always address the issue of information literacy in public, K-12 and academic libraries, and focus on end users. But what about workplace literacy?
A meme in the Millennial generation is that they hate to be called Millennials. Same goes for hipsters, punks, etc. So, forgive the shorthand in this post to describe the cohort of new professionals in our field. They offer as much diversity as there always has been, and no generalization can make up for that. That said, there are some themes emerging as newer professionals comprise an ever-increasing share of our field.
In an earlier post, I described a problem in our profession that is exacerbated by the double hump (Bactrian camel) in our population curve. How can you bridge the gap?
I’ve spent a lot of time with new graduates in our profession—those who have started on the path to great librarianship but struggle with finding their footing in the world of library teams—and I’ve noticed some themes. Please read on to find out what librarians have in common with camels.
Over the past few years we have heard a lot about the special role of elevator speeches—those sound bites you practice in case you have the ear of a key decision maker or influencer in your organization for a few floors. I love this tactic, but let’s remember that it’s just a micro-skill and we can’t leave our communication strategies up to chance encounters.
You’ve got an imagination. You’re creative. Librarians often say they’re not—so typically modest—but generally acknowledge that the magic in getting answers and insights from information is a creative act. Librarians are experts in that. If you’re too self-effacing to present yourself as an expert, can you simply admit to your expertise?
In this first post (of many) for Lucidea’s Think Clearly Blog, I’ll put forward two frameworks for thinking about how to successfully present creative ideas for innovation and change within your organization.