• Wikimedia Australia Wikimedia Australia
  • Ryan Donahue Ryan Donahue
  • Sue Gardner Sue Gardner
  • Ruth Kneale Ruth Kneale Ruth Kneale sponsored by the State Library of Queensland
  • Stuart Candy Stuart Candy Keynote Speaker, Dr Stuart Candy - Professional futurist
  • Ingrid Parent Ingrid Parent Ingrid Parent
  • Jenica Rogers Jenica Rogers Jenica Rogers sponsored by the State Library of Queensland
  • Marcus Foth Marcus Foth
  • NLS6 NLS6
Jan 312013
 

NLS6 is just around the corner, almost time to dust off the suitcase and get ready to head to sunny Brisvegas. So what do you pack? Or if you’re a Brisbane local who can take advantage of having their home comforts at hand, what should you bring to the conference each day?

Well, the best people to ask are your network, those who have done it before and have got the low down on conference essentials.
I turned to Twitter, crowdsourced for suggestions and here’s what my network told me…

A Twitter account and a business card. Twitter allows you to connect with people and will be a fantastic way to catch up with your new connections when NLS6 is over.

While Twitter is a great tool for making connections, having a business card to hand out is a sure fire way to stick in people’s memories. It doesn’t have to be a business card from an organisation either. A card that you have designed with links to your online resume or blog can get people interested in finding out more about you. And if you haven’t got time to get some business cards made up then bring some coloured paper and some pens and had out your details.

Those post-it notes will also come in handy for you to jot down a note reminding you about the person who gave you their card and what you might like to speak to them about in the future.

Ok, some of professional items ticked off. Now for the practical bit!

My network tells me comfy shoes are a must as well as outfits that are going to take you from the symposium to dinner and drinks afterwards. For a great list of what to pack and check out this list of what to pack for a weekend away. While NLS6 is a professional event and is going to provide you with some amazing professional development opportunities as well as inspiration by the bucketload, it’s also important to remember that it’s Brisbane on the weekend. No-one is going to be expecting you to show up in a business suit, which is why the Elsevier NLS6 BBQ has a beach theme. Seeing as you’ll save room in your suitcase by skipping the suit jackets, you can throw some boardies in.

Just remember it’s Brisbane in summer, so yes it is going to be hot (and humid), but it might also be raining (remember the brolly!) The conference location is air-conditioned, so ensure to pack a few layers you can take on and off easily and won’t take up much room in your bag.

And the last two important things to pack? Water and gadget chargers. Water because it’s Brisbane in summer, it’s hot, yes I am repeating myself I know! And gadget chargers because there is nothing worse than being without power when you really want to call,text, email or tweet someone. If you’ve got room throw in some spare chargers too, and as @katiedatwork said, ‘bring a powerboard and you’ll meet lots of new people!’.

For some more tips on conference survival have a look at advice these librarians offer. Conference veterans know what they are talking about.

Conference Survival Tips – 35 Conferences Later

A Library Conference Survival Guide – 20 Tips

So happy packing and safe travels, but before you rush off to start testing out comfy shoes, if you have any other suggestions on what to pack or how to survive, please feel free to share them in the comments below!

Many thanks to those who contributed their survival and packing suggestions – @acrystelle, @katiedatwork, @madradish, @lyndelleg, @SpiroAgnew2012 and @sutherma.

 January 31, 2013  Posted by at 10:30 am planning, travel, your nls6 Tagged with: , , , , ,  No Responses »
Jan 302013
 

This week’s topic up for discussion is practitioner research. Do practitioners have a role in contributing to research? How do practitioners do research? Katherine Howard gives a little introduction to the topic and the workshop – ‘Research for practitioners: getting started and getting supported’. In this workshop, experienced researchers will answer your questions and help turn your ideas into plans. Katherine answers the question that simmers at the back of the minds of practitioners in this profession – I’m a librarian/ archivist/ other information professional. Why should I do research?

Ever heard people say things along the lines of “I wish I’d learnt THAT in Library School” or “Those lecturer-type people don’t have a clue what it’s like to be a librarian/archivist/other information professional today.” Yes?  Well, that’s where you come in!!

Practitioner research is vital for a healthy, growing profession.  Can you imagine if the medical profession never wrote up clinical studies about their patients? Or if engineers didn’t advise their peers about how materials react differently in practical applications? It’s the same for the information professional.  The information sector has seen and continues to see a massive amount of change, and it is those at the ‘coal-face’ who see and experience it first-hand. Decision makers in the workplace need to base their future strategies and actions on evidence and  ‘lecturer-types’ need analytical results to better prepare each new cohort of graduates for the ever-changing information sector. The research that practitioners do (and publish!) plays a big role.  Oh, and a publication or two looks great on the CV, and can set you apart from other applicants as you develop your career.  It shows that you are invested in your profession.

Ok, but how do I actually DO research in my workplace?

I’m glad you asked!

Members of the ALIA Research Committee are conducting a workshop at NLS6 that will present the key elements of a research project. They will also cover the importance of a research proposal, and what you need to include to make yours shine.

If you have ideas about the workshop, feel free to leave a comment about what you would like to know more about, and we’ll try to incorporate it.

Grab your spot in this workshop now. Don’t miss out!

 January 30, 2013  Posted by at 10:30 am program, your nls6 Tagged with: , , , ,  No Responses »
Jan 282013
 

So you’ve just qualified as a library technician – what now? Do you want to learn about career options? Take on some professional development? Network with others in the same situation as yourself?

The 6th New Librarians Symposium (NLS6) can help you do all of this, and the great thing is, the conference is not just for librarians (despite the misleading conference title). Library technicians are more than welcome to attend and I believe they should. Why? Library technicians often have a unique perspective on the industry, and it would be great to see their fresh ideas and energy at the symposium.

Being a new graduate can be tough no matter which course you have graduated from, and events like the NLS6 can help technicians in so many ways. You can find out about the issues that are confronting the libraries at large, get unique perspectives from industry leaders and attend workshops that give you important workplace skills. Who knows it might even give you an edge answering a question in an interview or taking on a new project at work.

I’d love to see lots of new graduates at the conference, whatever course you have graduated from, and it’s not too late to register (ends 8th February)! Look forward to seeing you all there!

 

Claire has always been passionate about libraries and library work. She qualified as a library technician after leaving high school in 1997. Claire has held library assistant and library technician positions in academic, public, special and school libraries.

In 2011 she was the Social and Tours co-ordinator for the Back to Basics National Library and Information Technicians conference held in September. After graduating at the end of 2011 with a Graduate Diploma of Science (Information Services), Claire is currently working as Assistant Branch Librarian at Osborne Park Public Library. Interests outside work include sailing, scrapbooking and barracking for the Dockers :). She is also delivering a presentation  titled: ‘Know thy technician: examining working relationships between librarians and library technicians’ on the NLS6 showcase session.

Jan 272013
 

I feel like a fraud. I’m presenting at NLS6 and I’m still in the process of studying my Grad Dip in Library and Information Studies. It may be that I’m a very convincing fraud or that the skills I gained from my previous industry had put me in good stead for my new career choice. I like to think it is the latter.

I came from the museum industry and to be honest the leap from museums to libraries wasn’t huge but if you have come from the police like my, “We’re not from around here” co-presenter Raylene Jensen, the leap was far greater. She probably has better conflict management skills than I do.  However, my project management skills have enabled me to step into a temporary role of program development officer for the Gold Coast Library Services. Furthermore, the network of contacts from the arts and cultural industries has meant that I have been able to co-ordinate exhibitions and performance in libraries.

So, if you are coming to NLS as an “outsider” or a new graduate be aware that there is a need for your skills, be they from business, sporting, arts or elsewhere. Raylene and I will be talking about the benefits of coming from other industries and not being afraid to take chances in your new career choice.

 

Sophie Gow has a background in museum curatorship and event organisation, working for not for profit arts organisations and the peak industry body for museums and galleries in Queensland.  After successfully getting a job as a library assistant for Gold Coast Libraries the natural progression was to take over the library service. Sophie is currently embarking on her Grad Dip in Library Studies, which in many ways is not such a leap from museum management.

 

 

 January 27, 2013  Posted by at 10:00 am program, your nls6 Tagged with: , , ,  No Responses »
Jan 252013
 

You’ve registered for the symposium and you are excited about it.  Three whole days of learning and discovering the issues that affect information professionals.  But you’re also nervous, because you have never been to a symposium before. What to expect? Who will I meet?

It sounds overwhelming but it is vital to network when attending professional events such as the New Librarians’ Symposium.  It’s a tough time in the job market.  However networking opens the door to jobs and sectors you never knew existed.  You can meet people who can become lifelong friends or even your future employer.  The possibilities are endless, and with social media, it has never been easier to keep in contact with people.

Not convinced? Picture this – being in a room where everyone knows each other except you.  The feeling of being the odd one out does not sit well.  That is how I felt when I attended a professional development session.  Fortunately, I received some wise words from a liaison librarian based in Saskatchewan, Canada who helped me overcome this situation.  She advised me to become more involved in my profession and industry. She told me to NETWORK.

This is what I did:

  • I opened up a Twitter account and started following random people in my industry.
  • I created a Linkedin profile and joined some of the Information and Knowledge Management groups such as CILIP and IFLA.   
  • Created a business card highlighting my qualifications and my skills and handed these out to conference delegates and keynotes. Be confident – know who you are and what you can offer.

You have done all that and are at the symposium and you are surrounded by people you have never met before. Anxiety hits and thoughts such as these may rush through your head:

‘What happens if I don’t know anyone?’

‘Why would anyone want to listen to me?’

‘I’m not important.’

My advice is to take a deep breath, then approach people and introduce yourself.  Sure it will be awkward, but it is better than missing the opportunity.  If in the first few minutes of introducing yourself, the person does not say much, feel free to excuse yourself.  It is not rude to walk away politely if the conversation is forced and the answers you receive are short.

And if you’re stuck, here are some icebreakers to think about:

  • After introductions, ask them (if you are at the symposium) what sessions they will be attending
  • Follow on with the question – what kind of services do your organisation offer?
  • If they are wearing something interesting, comment on it.  You just never know where it will take you.

So there you go. Just some networking strategies to think about. Maybe you have your own, why not share these with us! I’m really excited and can’t wait to meet you all at NLS6!

 January 25, 2013  Posted by at 2:30 pm your nls6 Tagged with: , , ,  No Responses »
Jan 242013
 

Let me give it to you straight, Brisbane in February is hot, sometimes really hot and possibly even hot and stormy. But the one constant is the heat. There are some who love nothing better than lying in the summer sun, and while I admire their sunbaking stamina (while hoping they are using SPF30) I prefer to seek out the cool. One of the finest places in Brisbane to keep cool is Southbank, a 10 minute walk from the NLS6 venue, where you can keep cool swimming, having a coffee or soaking up some culture. So at the risk of this post sounding like a Tourism Australia ad, here are some of the best things about Southbank in the summer.

It’s got a beach! Okay, so the beach is man made, but it is still a very nice public lagoon overlooking the Brisbane River. If you squint a little or maybe buy tinted sunnies to change the brown colour of the river to blue you could be in the Maldives. Perhaps. At the very least you will be at a lovely, free, sparkling blue lagoon with lots of shady picnic and BBQ spots surrounding it.

It’s got culture! Including a library(!) and not just any old library, but a truly magnificent one. SLQ is a great spot to keep cool, check out some amazing exhibitions or take advantage of free Wi-Fi. In fact, lining the Brisbane river you can find SLQ, the Queensland Museum, Queensland Art Gallery and GOMA. All right next to each other and all air-conditioned. Wandering in and out of museums, libraries and galleries is a great way to keep cool and see some of Queensland’s cultural heritage.

It’s got food! And drinks too. Southbank has a range of cafes, restaurants and pubs, as well as places to purchase mandatory holiday ice-creams. If you are looking for somewhere to grab a coffee or have a three-course meal then Southbank has you covered and you can spend from a little or a lot to do so.

It’s got movies! Nothing like a darkened cinema and a tub of popcorn when you really want to cool off. For those of us on a budget these cinemas are cheap as well, with ticket prices under $10.

It’s beautiful! It is a really, really pretty precinct to wander around especially in the evening when the mercury falls. There are lots of scenic running tracks if you are feeling energetic or you can just amble by the river and get a good look at the city.  Southbank is the kind of place where you can spend an hour, an evening or a whole day. In fact in the evenings following the official NLS6 program, Southbank is ideal and easy to get to by popping over the Goodwill Bridge and have a few coldies with those you’ll meet.

So in the spirit of the cheesy tourist speak that has littered this post I think during NLS6 when your fellow delegates tweet to find out “Where the bloody hell are you?”, the answer will be easy – Southbank.

For more information, check out the websites listed in the pocket guide developed by the Experience team. Check out ideas for things to do in and around Brisbane, where to find wi-fi and look for the closest pharmacy to your accommodation for those emergency band aids. Download your copy.

 January 24, 2013  Posted by at 10:30 am out and about, planning, your nls6 Tagged with: , , , , , ,  No Responses »
Jan 202013
 

Hmm…New Librarian Symposium that sounds like an interesting conference but wait I cannot attend because I am just a library technician…

Sounds familiar to you?  I am here to tell you that NLS6 is for everyone.  Who am I? I was a library technician and I really wish that I attended more conferences and symposiums earlier on in my career as an information professional instead of thinking I could not attend because I thought I was not a qualified librarian.

NLS6 is different to other conferences as it is not just focused on issues affecting libraries, it expands beyond that.   We have sessions on how to build a professional online identity, how to find balance in your life and how to make your dreams a reality.

Throughout the symposium, there will be networking opportunities. For example, there will be a game where all delegates are encouraged to meet new faces and then add the interaction to the butcher paper wall.  Sounds cool doesn’t it? Want to know more then come along to NLS6 and join in the fun. You’ll be surprised at how many library technicians you might actually meet!

 January 20, 2013  Posted by at 1:09 pm program, your nls6 Tagged with: , , ,  No Responses »
Jan 172013
 

This week’s topic up for discussion is resilience. A little introduction and insight into the workshop – ‘Change is hard for everyone, so start with yourself’ – has been kindly contributed by the facilitator, Jenica Rogers. Jenica will guide participants through self-assessments about change, discuss strategies for building personal acceptance of both small and radical change, and examine some reasons why we resist the new and different. Jenica shares how a workshop about a tough subject like resilience comes together….

When discussing the details of my participation in NLS6, the symposium organising team asked that I give two workshops: one on leadership, and one on resilience. I said yes, immediately, for two different reasons. First, I’ve done leadership workshops before for librarians, and they’re fun and it’s in my wheelhouse and Yes! And second, resilience and change management are the kind of things that I think the most successful among us handle with natural aplomb, but which we *all* need, natural or no, so Yes!

Why resilience? Because the internet and its ubiquity changed the information landscape irrevocably, and libraries and librarians have entered a cycle of constant change as we learn what those changes mean for us. Because the jobs that some of us thought we’d have don’t exist anymore. Because it’s not going to slow down. And because, like death and taxes, change is inevitable. And as committed information professionals, we all want to be able to respond to change with grace, with fluidity, and with energy. Instead, many of us, and those we work with, respond to change with fear, with resistance, or with paralysis. We need less fear, in ourselves and in our libraries, and more resilience.

So for all of those reasons, I said YES! Except I’ve never delivered any formal content on resilience before. (Now what?)

The answer to “now what?” is easy: I’m an academic library administrator. When faced with an interesting challenge, I do research, and I start thinking.
On the formal learning side, I’ve been reading books, making the most of my Harvard Business Review online subscription (search for “resilience”), and scouring the web, both for library and non-library literature to inspire and inform me. One of the unexpected learning moments for me was that there are actual psychological and neurological drivers to resilience and our ability to rebound from traumatic change. On the one hand, of course there are. On the other hand, hey, neat. But what does that say about our expectation that everyone will just roll with change and come out the other side in great shape? Is the science telling us that our expectations are actually impossible? And what can we do about reconciling those two things? How do we prepare, plan, implement, and cope in meaningful ways, as leaders, coworkers, and employees when some of us are hard-wired to respond differently?

On the self-reflection side, this couldn’t have been more appropriately timed. The second half of 2012 was hard for me, professionally — I did big stuff outside my own place of work (Google Jenica Rogers and American Chemical Society), to big effect. I also stalled out at my own library, spinning my wheels while I waited to see what the impact would be of a big, looming, institutional change (Google SUNY Potsdam and systemness). At the same time, a big retirement wave culminated and now 31% of my faculty are “new” librarians. That’s a lot of change for any team, and requires serious resilience. As the Director, my responsibility is for managing it and fostering it and supporting it… not the best time for me to be feeling a bit battered, myself. So a little self-reflection about resilience and how we think about change were well-timed. It’s providing me with excellent fodder for discussion, examples, and case studies to share at the workshop!

So, I’ve learned a lot, and hope to spark some insight in those I get to talk with. Workshops are more than presentations, they’re an opportunity to engage with the professionals there “on the stage” and with our peers. To take challenging ideas and deconstruct them until we can see all the sides. To learn what’s worked for others, and to scribble down ideas about what might work for us. I hope to offer all of that to you as we talk about, learn about, and brainstorm about resilience in this workshop.

I still have four weeks left to prepare — any suggestions on aspects you’d like to see me explore before I come and share what I’ve learned? Please share in the comments.

Register now and secure your spot in Jenica’s workshop.

 January 17, 2013  Posted by at 10:30 am program, your nls6 Tagged with: , , ,  No Responses »
Jan 132013
 

Can’t make it to NLS6? You can still come to a workshop and the Symposium barbecue!

Workshops

We have opened up registrations for half and full day workshops for people who are not attending NLS6. These workshops will take place on Saturday 9 February (the day before the Symposium starts). While our workshops are geared towards new graduates, the topics are of broader appeal. Our facilitators are experts in their fields, both in Australia and abroad, and the workshops focus on some of the key issues for the information professions right now. Whether you’re a new grad who can’t make it to the whole Symposium or a more experienced information professional looking to kick start your professional development for 2013, we have something to offer you!

Our workshops will cover topics such as leadership, resilience, copyright, research in practice, and professional identity. Check out the full program to see what’s on offer.

Tickets to NLS6 workshops are a steal! We have priced these workshops to sell out and you simply won’t get access to this calibre of speakers anywhere else at these prices.

Half day workshop:

  • Student: $35
  • Standard: $45

Full day workshop:

  • Student: $65
  • Standard: $95

If you are finding it hard to choose a topic, we have a few tips to help you make that right decision.

Made your decision? Then register now! The number of workshop places available to people not attending the full Symposium are extremely limited, so get in quick!

Barbecue

Are you coming to Brisbane for Information Online? Are you a local who would like to take advantage of a great networking opportunity? You can buy a ticket to the NLS6 barbecue (our version of the traditional conference dinner) for just $18. This is a fantastic opportunity to network with new graduates, seasoned professionals, and our awesome speakers. The BBQ will be held from 5.30pm on Monday 11 February at QUT Gardens Point campus. Register now!

 January 13, 2013  Posted by at 11:00 am program, your nls6 Tagged with: , , , ,  No Responses »
Jan 122013
 

1/2/3/ Days like these / Happy Days.

NGAC book spine poem

There’s only 1-2-3 days left to enter our competition to win up to $1000 for your NLS6 travel and accommodation!

Did you see our last post which had an example entry using a book spine poem? Missed it? We’re shocked! Refresh your mind and spark your creativity by re-reading the post and then quickly get entering!

Enter by expressing how the bursary would help you to  “be different”. Remember to check out the terms and conditions below.

These funds are generously offered by the New Librarians Symposium (NLS6), and the competition is being run by New Generation Advisory Committee (NGAC).

Terms and conditions

You can enter if you’re an ALIA personal member who has graduated from an ALIA recognised course in the past 5 years, or if you’re currently studying an ALIA recognised course. This bursary is for people who wouldn’t otherwise receive funding from their organisation to attend the conference. If you have assisted in the organisation of the conference unfortunately you’re ineligible to enter.

Remember to confirm your entry by filling in the form! (apologies for the incorrect date on the form – you really do have till 15 January 2013 to enter).

Extended deadline

The extended deadline gives you till 15 January 2013 to enter. If you have any questions feel free to contact the New Generation Advisory Committee via @aliangac or aliangac [AT] gmail.com

Happy creating!

Sonja Barfoed, @SonjaBarfoed and Danielle Johanesen, @librarynerdD Committee members of ALIA NGAC @aliangac

 January 12, 2013  Posted by at 11:00 am accommodation, travel, your nls6 Tagged with: , ,  No Responses »