Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Thing 4 Google

Ah Google, that feels more familiar! But what's this? Hangouts?
Needless to say, none of my contacts have ever tried to 'hangout' in the Google sense, but I've sent an invitation to one of my pals, and if she ever gets back to me, I'll give it a go!
I've put my photo on (my brand!), and have taken a good look at the security settings. There's obviously lots more for me to explore, but I've made a start...

Friday, 2 October 2015

Thing 3 Your Professional Brand

What took me so long? I know, you're thinking I'm not serious about following Rudai 23, but this is not so.
 I should have known that starting the course so close to the end of term would cause me to falter at (almost) the first hurdle. With so much going on at work, the very last thing I wanted to do when I got home was jump back on the computer.
Then the long Summer break... sorry, but there was always something else I'd rather be doing!! I'm just not tech-motivated, but that's exactly why I need to complete this course.

Anyway, I'm back, and what's more I have a photo and the start of a profile on LinkedIn.
Like many others (I suspect) I joined LinkedIn a long time ago as a means to finding an old friend. It worked, she was there, and we're back in touch, but then that was it, I didn't do anything further. So thanks to Rudai 23 I've made a bit of effort, and taken my first baby steps into social media. There will be no stopping me now. Who am I kidding? It feels alien and awkward promoting 'my brand'. Maybe the next 'thing' will be easier...

Friday, 10 July 2015

Thing 2 - How and why I became a librarian

Well I should probably start with a confession - I'm not really a librarian! My job title is Learning Resource Centre Manager, and my career path started off with a BA (hons) in English Literature and Education, followed by 17 years as a bookseller, primarily as a children's book specialist.

Starting out, I could never have imagined myself in this role, chiefly because it didn't exist in its present form. I know that the school I attended back in the 1970s had a librarian, but the school library wasn't welcoming; it was highly polished and austere, with rules you could break just by blinking, or so it seemed to me then. No, that wasn't a career that appealed, though I loved reading and enjoyed nothing better than sharing what I'd learned with others.

So maybe I should train to be a teacher? That was my next thought, but rather than a BEd I chose to study the philosophy and history of education, alongside my first love, English Literature. In retrospect this was a wise move, as I quickly discovered that teaching was mostly about delivering a curriculum and ensuring that pupils could pass exams. My naive ideals of education in the broadest sense, knowledge for its own sake, reading for the pure joy of it, were all shattered. I realised that teaching was not for me.

So I became a bookseller - just while I decided what career to choose, you understand. Bookselling was fantastic; I could recommend my favourite authors, and get to meet quite a few of them too. True, I sometimes had to dress as Mr Happy or Spot the Dog, but this was more than made up for by the opportunities to guide and assist customers in their search for the perfect book. Working in retail is a young person's game though, and after 17 years I began to notice the long days on my feet and the antisocial hours. Setting up the Boxing Day sale before you go home exhausted on Christmas Eve is the reality of this kind of work.

So if I could do the same kind of work, but during school hours, and also promote the newly developing internet (this was 1999) as a provider of knowledge alongside my beloved books... what an amazing job that would be... and so it has proved! LRC Manager ticks all the boxes for me. I support the curriculum of course, but I'm not constrained by it. I can inspire and support young people to reach their potential and be the very best they can be, not just at passing exams, but as well rounded individuals. I love my job, and hope to continue to provide information and reading for pleasure, in whatever format it is wanted well into the future.