Saturday, October 27, 2007

Update on the new job


I love my new job.

I'm working in a nice environment, with lovely people. The perks are great (fresh fruit and an espresso machine), the other people that work there seem happy to be there, and, most of all, there's heaps of things that need to be improved, and it's achievable.

See, it's the last one that's the kicker. The rest is nice, but the last point makes me feel like I will have challenges, I'll meet those challenges, I'll learn things in the process, and I'll develop my career in this job. It makes me feel like there's somewhere to go.

But I'm afraid that I've picked up a head cold, and my writing is somewhat uninspired at the moment. I'm having a quiet weekend at home, and next week I've got two big library things: I'm representing the Sydney Crew at the ALIA NAC teleconference on Tuesday night, and then Wednesday night I'm attending (dare I say co-hosting) a showing of the new ABC series "The Librarians" at, would you believe it, the ABC Library! I think that is so cool, and I'm so looking forward to it.

And moving in three weeks!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

What chapter are we up to?

I feel like giggling, I'm so excited!

I got me a new job! A good one!

This has been an interesting year - and it's not over yet. At the beginning of the year I had a plan for how it was going to go. I was going to leave my wonderful but limiting stale job, and move into a larger library. I was going to take a step sideways to create more opportunities. By the end of the year I was going to be established in the new job.

As you loyal readers know, it didn't quite turn out that way. The last six months have been hard and confusing and depressing. I've tried very hard to keep up the "throw plans to the wind, see what life brings me" attitude but at heart I'm a compulsive planner, and it was bugging me that I wasn't in a position to contribute in significant ways to my workplace.

The new job I'm starting (on Monday - this all happened very quickly) will be hard. It's a small team, but what looks like a good one. It's a subject matter that I'm not well versed in - so yay, I get to learn heaps of new things! The library that has undergone, and is still undergoing, a lot of change, and I love those kinds of places. I'm going to have to do things that I don't know how to do, and that gets me all excited. Plus, there's the little things that can actually be big things - it's back in the CBD, in new offices, with natural light and (I hope) working air conditioning. If the computer network is reliable I'll believe I've hit the jackpot.

I'm hoping I can settle here. I really don't want to have a resume littered with stops and starts, and besides, I love building relationships and planning for the future and then being there to see it come true.

So, while starting a new job I'll also be trying to pack up my house - my partner and I having recently bought a house together. It's going to be a busy few weeks. On that note, try as I might, please forgive me if blog posting becomes a little less regular over the next month or two. Don't go away!

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Warning: evangelism ahead

During the week I attended my local ALIA National Advisory Congress meeting, which I really enjoyed. So I'm going to get all evangelistic about involvement here.

There were very few people there. Considering the size of a city like Sydney, we had all of 9 people. I know all the reasons why people don't go (and I was very tempted myself just to go home and skip the whole thing), but given that many more people don't go than go, it seems to me that it's the reasons to go that are the rarer species.

So why bother? First up, ALIA is a member organisation. That's not lip service - as an ALIA member I have influence over what the association does. I've run events and attended other events run by those that were able and willing to get involved, and it's not because some paid member of the ALIA staff arranged these events - it's because of volunteers like myself.

The other thing - how much do you know about me? Do you know what I want from my association? Do you know how I would respond to questions posed by the ALIA Board? More importantly, do you agree with me? If you're not able to say yes to all those questions, then how comfortable are you with the idea that I'm there representing hundreds of other members? I'm not representing anyone other than myself in an official capacity, of course, but the fact is that in these kind of situations, the vocal become defacto representatives of the silent. I should only be one voice, one member, but there I was representing one ninth of Sydney members. That's ridiculous! For those that don't come to the NACs because they can't be bothered - stop it! Stop making me represent you! I have no idea what you want and I don't want to speak for you!

(Please note - I have many friends who were not able to attend for darn good reasons, and I'm not saying that everyone should bend heaven and earth to attend. But let's face it, there are plenty of people who don't go to these things because they don't see any reason why they should, and I'm trying to present a reason)

I have no patience for those that say ALIA doesn't do what they want or doesn't represent them. I'm not ALIA's biggest fan, and I'm well acquainted with it's faults - in fact I suspect there are staff at National Office that groan when they see my name, because I'm probably complaining about something AGAIN - but it occurs to me that if ALIA isn't relevant to me, I have the power to change that. So does everyone else.

If you didn't make it to the NAC, and you're an ALIA member, you can still comment on the discussions by viewing the relevant papers here Go on! Stop letting me speak for you!