I finished up at my job in the last week of July. I’ve been sorting out papers and folders, packing up personal items and saying goodbye to people. It’s the saying goodbye which is often the hardest, as I’ve known these people, who are incredibly hard-working, professional and dedicated to their job and roles, for a very long time, in some cases 10 years.
I am also leaving my work when it is at a time of impending change and great uncertainty for my colleagues.
It is at times like this that professional development is crucial, as it allows you to update your qualifications, improve your knowledge in your profession and be aware that there can be life beyond your work environment.
It is more than simply training or doing a course- they are important components of professional development, but there is more to professional development than a certificate. It’s what you do with that knowledge that counts.
These were the three things I suggested to a work colleague.
1. Read- keep up to date with trends and what courses are being offered, library news and library jobs.
You can follow RSS feeds of blogs and websites, or follow websites on Twitter which will highlight articles.
You can also use products such as Zite on your smartphone which will push stories to you that it thinks you will like.
I use Feedly to collate and read my RSS feeds, below which are a few…
Librarian in Black
Mashable– techie, social media
eGovernment Resources centre
Musings about Librarianship– Aaron Tay from the National Library of Singapore.
The Next Web
Delimiter– Australian ICT news
http://libraryjobs.com.au– you will get a few jobs on this, not a lot!
You can also get alerts for jobs from universities when they post something that matches your criteria.
OneUmbrella is another good place for jobs and they’re also on Twitter. *waves to the nice person who manages their Twitter feed*
2. Network-I look to other people for inspiration, and see what they have been exploring and reading. Twitter is a great place to connect with librarians, and they will often share great articles, pearls of wisdom, and even better, become good friends.
Linkedin is another place to develop a professional online presence and network with people.
You should also sign up to mailing lists, like ALIA, VALA, ALLA and PLVN, which will promote events and also jobs.
Google will run a number of programs and courses on searching, the last one being for Google Maps
Library Juice Academy are US-based and do library-related technology courses
Code Academy is good for learning how to code
1stwebdesigneralso offer tutorials
You may wish to learn about e-pubs- getting training in Adobe products like inDesign (expensive but good for desk-top publishing)
If you are interested in additional qualifications, such as training, try and enrol in a Cert IV in Training and Assessment which is a recognised qualification for trainers and will stand you in good stead. Making sure yo have transferable skills is important.
What advice would you give someone who is wanting to develop their skills?