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AtoZ Blogging Challenge – eXcited

28 Apr

2017atozDuring the month of April, I’ll be participating in the 2017 Blogging from A to Z Challenge. For this year’s theme, I chose to look at leadership qualities as I’ve just recently (within the past 6 months) become the director of my public library. We have about 50 staff members, most of whom are part-time employees serving a 30,000 resident community by providing high-quality programs and resources. Each day, I’ll look at one trait and how it’s helped me to become a better director.

I had to cheat today because there very few positive leadership qualities that start with X, so I subbed in eXcited (it almost counts). I’m not afraid to show my excitement at work for projects, activities, and even the mundane tasks. More and more I hear my staff members marveling at everything I’m willing to do – cover books, set up a new aquarium for our turtle, weed books, pack boxes – whatever it takes to keep the library moving. I think it’s important as a leader to be willing to roll up your sleeves and jump in where necessary. I’m still working on delegating, but I’ve got the teamwork aspect down. Sharing my passion and excitement encourages my staff to be excited about their work too and that excited can be seen by our patrons. Who doesn’t love seeing someone enjoy the work they do and take pride in it?

AtoZ Blogging Challenge – Willing

27 Apr

2017atozDuring the month of April, I’ll be participating in the 2017 Blogging from A to Z Challenge. For this year’s theme, I chose to look at leadership qualities as I’ve just recently (within the past 6 months) become the director of my public library. We have about 50 staff members, most of whom are part-time employees serving a 30,000 resident community by providing high-quality programs and resources. Each day, I’ll look at one trait and how it’s helped me to become a better director.

It’s important, at times, to be willing to make compromises as a leader. It’s not always easy to make these compromises, but sometimes compromises will get you further down the road. This isn’t always easy for me as I tend to make a decision and then expect results, but sometimes you have to work with other people to get the results you’re looking for and compromises have to be made. And as I’m finding, to be willing to work with organizations and groups of people, we often get positive results and are able to dream bigger by having others to work with. We recently built a new community center in our township, which is great for residents, but took some time for our Park and Recreation Department and the Library to figure out how to work together to provide classes together. We’re currently partnering once a month to offer a free fitness class to the community and just submitted a grant to provide a healthy living series of programs in the future. It hasn’t been easy, but by willing to make compromises on both sides of the table, we’re able to provide better services to our community and that’s what we both want.

AtoZ Blogging Challenge – Vision

26 Apr

2017atozDuring the month of April, I’ll be participating in the 2017 Blogging from A to Z Challenge. For this year’s theme, I chose to look at leadership qualities as I’ve just recently (within the past 6 months) become the director of my public library. We have about 50 staff members, most of whom are part-time employees serving a 30,000 resident community by providing high-quality programs and resources. Each day, I’ll look at one trait and how it’s helped me to become a better director.

We’re currently developing a strategic plan for our library as we’ve had no vision for a number of years, which makes creating and achieving department and personal goals somewhat disjointed from the organization as a whole. Our strategic plan process is starting at the base level of creating a new mission and vision statement as well as core values, goals and objectives for the next few years. The whole planning process will end up taking about a year, with the hope that our strategic plan and new library brand will be released in January 2018.

The thought of creating large-scale projects from scratch that take a year, plus to develop is insane to me as I was usually looking at a few months at a time when I planned programs as a children’s librarian. But, I’m finding this type of long-range work really exciting and enjoyable – it’s definitely a different way of thinking, but also really exciting at the same time!

We’re looking at ways to create a vision for the future and what role the library plays in that vision. Our working model is, “Strengthening a connected and engaged community.” (which for the record, I’m really liking!) It’s a short vision of what we want to see in the future and clearly shows what the library wants to do to support this vision of the future. With the vision in place, we’re currently working on our mission statement and core values – all of which are short, sweet and to the point, sot that the staff and community can embrace these statements and better understand the library’s role in the community.

Top Ten Tuesday: Things That Will Make Me Instantly NOT Want To Read A Book

25 Apr
  1. Poetry
    Although I have enjoyed novels in verse, reading poetry is something that I can’t seem to get into… I’m a quick reader and I think the subtle nuance of poetry is often lost on me.
  2. Horror
    Although I love thrillers, I can’t stand to be scared, especially if I’m home alone. I don’t like scary movies, haunted houses, etc. It’s probably because it makes me feel like I’m not in control and I don’t like it.
  3. High Fantasy
    When a book has a map and a glossary of vocabulary in the back, it tends to disinterest me really fast – Lord of the Rings, not for me!
  4. Classics
    I never enjoyed reading the classics in high school and even the few I’ve picked up since, I just don’t seem to enjoy too much.
  5. Plays
    I could never understand why we were required to read Shakespeare in school, it’s a play, shouldn’t it be watched? And before everyone starts explaining, I know the language and format are important to understand, but I’d much rather watch a show than read it.
  6. Graphic Novels
    A genre that I want to love, but just really don’t enjoy reading too much. I always feel like I’m not getting enough out of the story, probably because I do read very quickly and the illustrations almost get in my way.
  7. Autobiographies/Biographies
    I don’t have anything against autobiographies and biographies, it’s just not a genre that I’ll pick up for fun, unless I’ve gotten a recommendation for something specific.
  8. Adult books
    I know this is a vast majority of books, but as a (former) children’s librarian I focused a lot of my time on middle grade and young adult literature and I feel like that is stuff I really enjoy. I’ll read adult material, but it’s not usually my go-to.
  9. Short Stories
    I feel like just when I’m getting to know the story, it’s over.

There are always exceptions to the rule and I’m totally using an exception right now, as I could only come up with a Top Nine Tuesday instead of a Top Ten list. I’m more than willing to try pretty much anything, especially if I get a review from a friend or colleague. What types of books are on your Not Reading List?


Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Book

AtoZ Blogging Challenge – Understand

25 Apr

2017atozDuring the month of April, I’ll be participating in the 2017 Blogging from A to Z Challenge. For this year’s theme, I chose to look at leadership qualities as I’ve just recently (within the past 6 months) become the director of my public library. We have about 50 staff members, most of whom are part-time employees serving a 30,000 resident community by providing high-quality programs and resources. Each day, I’ll look at one trait and how it’s helped me to become a better director.

One of the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey is, “Seek first to understand, then to be understood,” is a great phrase to keep in mind as a leader. I am continually reminding myself to gather all the information I can before making a decision. It can be difficult when there are so many people who work on a single aspect of the library work, to really understand each part of what is going on, but it’s so important to know all the details before jumping in and making changes. But, when you do understand, then you can make decisions that will make a difference.

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