This was meant to be the week where I got over the cold and started doing great. Unfortunately the first part didn't happen, and I had a day off work, followed by a public holiday, both of which were spent sniffling and coughing on the couch. How very, very boring.
But Friday - but Friday I had pulled my finger out, and managed to get to a point where I could have a short phone conversation without descending into a coughing fit (I still wasn't able to sit through a training session though). So call I did - and I have four appointments for the coming week, and a date to call someone for another appointment! So in the week ahead I reckon I'll end up doing 6 appointments, aiming for 10 the next week. Optimistic? Yep. Cos no matter how hard I call, I'm still relying on these people being available, and at relatively short notice. But a girl's gotta dream, no?
(In our induction our boss presented us with a sheet of paper indicating our targets - 20 appointments per week. It scared me a little until he pointed out that the experienced staff hadn't reached that level yet, and actually it was an arbitrary level - the just needed a target which could later be adjusted.)
So far I haven't hit any problems. In fact, the response I've gotten on the phone from these people has mostly been along the lines of "Oh, the library? Um, yeah, that'd be good. What a nice idea!"
Something else that came up - the training manager for the library has asked me to be involved in a presentation to staff about conference involvement, with the other people on the staff that were involved in NLS2006. First I need my team leader's permission (and that in itself is an adjustment for me - I used to be able to make my own decisions about how to spend my time) but hopefully there won't be any objections. I'm really looking forward to being able to give a little back to this group of people that have so far invested so much time and energy into training me. Hopefully I can inspire some of them to stick their hands up, because honestly, convening NLS2006 was one of the best and most enjoyable things I've ever done.
Following this segue, the ALIA Conferences and Professional Development Standing Committee have asked me to be involved in a teleconference on the future of sponsorship for ALIA conferences. I'm so glad this discussion is taking place. What I'm seeing is an increasing number of events vying for a shrinking sponsorship budget from the same pool of companies. It was hard, with NLS, to be trying to get money from the same companies as all the other ALIA events, and it made things awkward sometimes too - there were times when we were held back from a company because ALIA were trying to get them to sponsor something bigger, and we were only allowed a look in once that had been finalised.
We did try changing tack and targeting companies that might want to market to a conference of young, mostly female professionals, such as gyms, magazines, cosmetic companies, etc. but we had this idea too late to make it work, and we lacked a foot in the door - we could never get past receptionists. But I think it's how ALIA needs to be thinking in the future. We are more than a bunch of librarians. There are some interesting alternative ideas floating around at the moment, and I'm looking forward to the discussion (provided I'm allowed to attend!).
So the week ahead will be meeting week. I'm hoping to blog midweek, as next weekend will be taken up with the third wedding I'll be attending this year - a big Latvian bash up north. Latvians know how to party, so I'd better have shaken the last of this cold by then cos I'll need all the strength I can get! I'm a little scared that I'll be one of only two non-Latvians there, but I've been taught the Latvian words for beer and vodka and I've subsequently been assured that I'll have no problems communicating.