Tuesday, 11 June 2013

A morning in the life...


This is Heather here, bringing you a post about how I start my work day and fit in a library world news update before the daily rush begins.

I tend to start my work day at around 8am as I am the person to call if you are calling in sick to work. I need to be in before those calls start and to look at rearranging the rosters before library opening at 9.30am.

I’ve come a long way since I first took over taking charge of the rosters nearly 18 months ago. At first I would stare at the roster and peer at the names on it until they became blurry and hope that they would just jump into place for me by themselves. They never did though, I always had to take the action myself.

Over time, the formula for how the rosters worked became so ingrained in my head that it has become very simple to move names around, knowing exactly where different people are able to work and what their needs and preferences are. I feel that doing this work has also improved my problem solving skills (as there is something to change nearly every day), my flexibility with my work and ability to cope with sudden disruption. I am constantly working with a house of cards that could fall to pieces any minute! It can be a stressful job, especially in winter, where we have had up to seven people call in sick on one day this year (my record is twelve), but generally, I’ve developed great coping skills and have learned not to be too precious about my beautiful and perfect roster being ruined by illness.

While I’m waiting for the calls to start coming in, I spend an hour or so checking twitter and reading blogs to put me into library mode for the day. I use twitter only professionally and find it a fantastic news stream of interesting articles and for gathering ideas. I follow other public libraries, other librarians I’ve met, library workers overseas, LIS bloggers, museums, public intellectuals, writers and artists, among others. Having a constant stream of inspiration headed my way every morning really increases the buzz from the first coffee of the day and has me feeling informed and excited about what’s going on before the rest of the library staff have even got here.

Although I mostly read and occasionally retweet, I’d love to connect with any others LIS professionals out there and hear what you have to say. You’ll find me @hettie_betty


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