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Flippin’ Busy

Kevin King —  November 18, 2015 — 2 Comments

flipboardThe past couple of months I have been burning the candle at both ends. This means that the blog has been taking a backseat to things like sleeping and eating. Even though I have not been posting as regularly as I would like, I am still monitoring articles, reading books, and viewing other blogs on leadership. I save the best stuff on Flipboard an amazing tool that allows me to “flip” great articles I find on the web into a “magazine” so I can refer to them at a later date. Many of my blog posts are based on something I have “flipped” into the Library Lost & Found Magazine.

I encourage you to use Flipboard online or download the app. Afterwards be sure to follow the Library Lost & Found Magazine. You’ll find a lot of great resources to help you be a great leader and you just might learn a thing or two.

Recognition Reminder

Kevin King —  September 25, 2015 — 1 Comment

04iconMy biggest weakness as a manager is giving recognition. As someone whose greatest strength is innovation and future thinking, I am horrible at celebrating the most recent achievements of my teammates. This is why when I read articles that highlight what employees complain most about their leaders, it does not shock me that recognition is mentioned most often. Recently I have turned to creating a digital reminder (app of choice is Wunderlist) to help me remember to recognize every day. Not only does it encourage me to take a few minutes every day to thank people for contributing to the team, it forces me explore what each staff member is doing for the library. I am often learning about new projects, innovations and great customer service deeds because I am taking the time to seek out people to recognize.

In a recent Harvard Business Review blog post titled, “The Top Complaints from Employees About Their Leaders,” author Lou Solomon lists some great ways to recognize your team members. It is a amazing resource to use in addition to being intentional about recognizing on a daily basis.

LL&F on Flipboard!

Kevin King —  March 17, 2015 — Leave a comment

flipboardI am a huge fan of the Flipboard, a social media type aggregator that collects stories from the web into an easy to read magazine format.  My morning ritual usually involves coffee and a review of my Flipboard “magazines” on one of my digital devices.  Over the past year, I have been collecting interesting stories on leadership that I will sometimes use as inspiration for a blog post.  Today I noticed that I have 89 stories within the Library Lost & Found Flipboard Magazine!  If you are in need of some quick hits of leadership inspiration, check it out.

Transparency is one of the more challenging aspects of leadership. Letting people in your group and across your organization know what you’re doing, what your priorities are, and what projects are up next takes a huge amount of conscious communication.

Trello offers a fix. As Kelly covered in her review of Trello last year, this online software is a collaborative productivity tool based on cards. It’s a good fit for libraries, where work is usually assigned to teams instead of individuals.

Our library has been easing into Trello, especially in IT and web initiatives, in order to track projects and individual tasks. Now, leadership (especially in library IT) is consciously using Trello for organizational transparency.

Potential projects are posted in priority order by each department on a digital board that can be viewed by anyone in the organization.

For instance, our circulation team needs a new web-based application for managing materials on course reserves. We create a card:Screenshot of a Trello "card" for "Course reserves management tool"Eventually, the card is fully fleshed out with the resources and time required, and prioritized along with other projects across the organization. Library staff invested in the project can follow the progress as the card is updated. The process is transparent.

Of course, this doesn’t happen without some wrangling. Project managers Suzanne Chapman, Meghan Musolff, and Kat Hagedorn shepherd the process along, including helping staff submitting cards describe their dream projects in words understandable across the library.

How does your library promote transparency? Do you use technology, or rely on in-person communication?

photo credit: ntr23 via photopin cc

photo credit: ntr23 via photopin cc

If you are like me, you have probably got a whole slew of blogs and websites about library work. However, in my experience, if you want to see the big picture or find the next big idea, you will need to look outside our circle of library people. Here are some websites that I put on my reading list.

Ask a Manager

Alison Green is a former manager that answers questions on everything from resumes, interviewing to being productive on the job. Every library supervisor should read her stuff religiously. Even if you have no aspirations for management, Ask a Manager, puts problems in context and also helps you manage “up”. Job hunters will love the advice on cover letters, resumes and interviewing.

My personal favorite: 10 Worst Holiday Party Disasters

Evil HR Lady

This one is one of my favorites! Evil HR Lady is Suzanne Lucas, a former human resources manager. Like Ask a Manager, Suzanne answers questions on everything human resources. I can’t tell you how many times I have used her for my “reality” check. Not sure something is legal? ethical? or practical? Evil HR Lady has you covered. Even if you are just a minion out there in the working world, this blog will tell you what to expect from an employer (beyond a paycheck).

HBR (Harvard Business Review)

HBR is one of the best places to get your head around big ideas in leadership, work performance and strategic thinking. The format is a bit longer, but worth every paragraph.

Recent Favorite: How to Make Yourself Work When You Just Don’t Want To

Forbes

Like HBR, this is where go for more big picture articles about leadership and management. On the left hand top right menu pick the Leadership category and you are good to go. Job hunters: there are some really good tips for writing resumes and great advice for interviewing.

Recent Favorite: Leadership Lessons from Animal House

Lifehacker

I can already hear everyone saying that this isn’t really a business blog or management blog. It’s a blog about tips, strategies and shortcut in everyday life. I always think this is a great source for what I will tactfully call “getting your crap together”.

Even if you don’t like my favorites, try expanding your library reading to the non-library world. Hanging with “civilians” can be illuminating.