training


Trying to create the definitive set of competencies for all library organizations is like creating the definitive LEGO® construction—no matter how spectacular, people will still want to build their own creations. The Competency Index for the Library Field was compiled by WebJunction with that in mind. It provides libraries with the set of building blocks from which to construct a foundation for the development of staff training, recruiting, succession planning, and other personnel strategies.

The Competency Index ‘blocks’ come in four sizes.

  • Large blocks: broad categories, such as Library Management, Personal-Interpersonal, etc.
  • Medium blocks: sub-categories, such as Communication, Customer service, etc. under the Personal-Interpersonal category
  • Small blocks: statements of competency related to the sub-category; for example, Customer Service has four competency statements
  • Tiny blocks: more detailed statements of the knowledge, skills, attitudes, and behavior (KSAs) associated with each competency statement; for example, each customer service competency statement has between 3-5 KSA statements.

So mix-and-match freely and let the constructions begin.

Competencies are only the foundation. Check out the connections to courses and resources for building the superstructure for staff development.

Webinar: Libraries as Learning Organizations
When: Tuesday, May 26, 2009, Time: 2:00pm – 3:30pm (EDT)
Co-sponsored by CLENERT and WebJunction
Registration Link: http://evanced.info/webjunction/evanced/eventsignup.asp?ID=1592

What makes a library a learning organization? What does it take to build an organization-wide commitment to team and individual learning? Why make the effort, especially in these economic times?

Our panelists, representing libraries at different mileposts on the road to becoming learning organizations, are finding their own answers to these questions and will share challenges, strategies, and successes about the four Bs of the journey:

  • BENEFITS of a learning culture
  • BUILDING the environment
  • BEING a learning champion
  • BEYOND to sustainability.

Hear ways to use technology appropriately to enable faster, more personalized learning and to institutionalize knowledge sharing. Because most learning occurs on the job, at the point of need, you will discover ways to create a positive performance environment.

Even if your library is not yet moving in this direction, you will take away ideas that you can use immediately to implement learning solutions individually and organizationally.

Panelists:

  • Sandra Smith, Training and Development Manager, Denver Public Library
  • Michele Leininger, Information Experience Director,Pierce County Library
  • Elizabeth Iaukea, Learning Manager, Pierce County Library
  • Julia Lanham, Human Resources, Public Library of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County.

Registration Link: http://evanced.info/webjunction/evanced/eventsignup.asp?ID=1592

 

 

Library directors and managers, colleagues have been assuring me recently, play a critical role in the success or failure of workplace learning and performance programs in the organizations they oversee. It goes beyond supporting and approving budgets: if they show an advocate’s interest in what is happening through training programs, check with their colleagues and their staff to see what effect those programs are having, and actually participate in learning opportunities offered within their organizations, they are setting a standard which encourages effective learning and the development of communities of learners.

 

It was no surprise to me, then, that these comments came to mind repeatedly when I was lucky enough to attend the awards ceremony for the 2009 Goldman Environmental Prize recipients here in San Francisco last night. The awards honor people who, by the act of living and acting on their beliefs in spite of significant challenges, time constraints, and, occasionally, threats of incarceration and death, train the rest of us to believe that we, too, can make a difference.

 

The usual high profile environmental activists were there: Al Gore and Robert Redford provided opening comments which (globally) warmed up the crowd and reminded all of us that we have a role to play. Singer-songwriter Tracy Chapman provided entertainment by singing one of her own songs (“Talkin’ Bout A Revolution”) and doing a cover of Joni Mitchell’s “Big Yellow Taxi”—“Don’t it always seem to go that you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone.”

 

But the real stars and trainers were those being honored, including Maria Gunnoe. From her home in the heart of Appalachia, in West Virginia, she stood up against the removal of mountaintops to expedite coal mining because the byproducts of that process are creating toxic wastes which are destroying the area where her family has lived for more than a century. Although neighbors were afraid to testify, she did, and a court ruling halted one particularly damaging mountaintop removal project which was affecting her property. The joy all of us in the audience felt as she accepted her award was tempered by the image of the tall cyclone fence which was constructed around her house and the news that she needed  around-the-clock security protection to counter the threats she was receiving while she carried on her fight.

 

Then there were Wanze Eduards and Hugo Jabini, who successfully organized entire communities in the Saramaka lands in Suriname (within the Amazonian forests) to halt destructive logging. And Yuyun Ismawati, who helped implement community-based safe and sustainable waste management programs in Indonesian communities through her organization, Bali Fokus. And Olga Speranskaya, a Russian scientist whose community-based efforts have become a model worldwide for efforts to encourage the clean-up of toxic waste sites. And Syeda Rizwana Hasan, an environmental attorney in Bangladesh whose efforts successfully stopped toxin-laden ships from being allowed to be brought up on beaches in her country so the wrecks could be broken into scrap—a process called “ship breaking”—to be resold while the waste polluted the beaches. And, finally, Marc Ona Essangui, a wheelchair-using activist whose successful efforts to stop a massive government-approved mining project in Gabon’s Ivindo National Park (in west central Africa) led to his arrest and detention for several days earlier this year.

 

Each one of them received standing ovations from those of us who were there to hear their acceptance speeches. Hundreds of us joined them at a post-event reception in their honor to shake their hands and thank them for reminding us that significant effects begin with the efforts of individuals. And at least a few of us, in thinking about what we can do in our own lives to make a difference within the communities we serve, were reminded that some of the most effective training comes from those who live the lessons the rest of us still need to learn and follow.

It’s not as if trainer-teacher-learners—a group which includes nearly anyone currently affiliated with or using libraries—have any extra time on our hands. There are mornings when the act of opening our eyes and glancing at our to-do lists is enough to make us want to dive back under our blankets, close our eyes, and hope that visions of things to be done will somehow miraculously vanish before we move out of the comfort of our beds.

 

That, however, didn’t stop several of us from immediately rising to the challenge posed by our fellow CE Buzz blogger Peter Bromberg this morning when he noted–in much kinder and gentler words than I’m using here–that we’ve become somewhat slothful about keeping up our commitment to contribute to CE Buzz and the community of learners it represents. In asking us whether we wanted to continue as contributors and, more importantly, whether we were willing to commit to a fairly easy schedule of posting articles so that fresh content appears regularly, Peter inadvertently reminded us why we were so attracted to the site initially.

 

My immediate reaction was to call Peter; discuss what we’re doing and what we might be doing better; and promise that I would return sooner than later. Excited and encouraged by what we know will come of this, we both noted that there seems to be a rising wave of energy and excitement around the work CLENE is currently doing and the level of commitment CLENE members bring to the organization and to our parent organization, the American Library Association.

 

The blog, for many of us, is both an extension and an integral part of what CLENE provides and inspires—a 21st-century physical and online variation of the Third Place which Ray Oldenburg, in The Great Good Place, suggested we need in addition to home and workplace. It should and deserves to be nurtured. And it’s only going to grow if those of us who are committed to contributing to it meet our commitments, and those of you who are drawn into this community of trainer-teacher-learners become active participants through your responses and engagement with all that CLENE and CE Buzz can offer.

 

“It feels as if we’re right at a tipping point,” Peter commented, and I began to laugh, for even though I recognized the term “tipping point” as coming from Malcolm Gladwell’s book which uses the term as its title, my mind—in equal states of exhaustion and hyper-caffeination—began to latch onto the word “tipping,” picture things being tipped, and—for no reason I can offer other than my penchant for always enjoying word and visual playfulness—started thinking about things being tipped over. Like a glass of wine. Or a glass of milk. Or, in the oft-cited image which must hearken back to our rural roots and people with too much time on their hands, cows—as in “cow-tipping.”

 

Now please understand that neither Peter nor I are suggesting that we’re going to pursue cow-tipping as a learning technique or a fundraising effort on behalf of CLENE or any of its activities under the auspices of the American Library Association. (I frankly doubt that ALA and its incoming president, Camila Alire, would be very supportive of this kind of endeavor.) On the other hand, the trainer-teacher-learner in me did spend a little time this afternoon with Wikipedia and other sources to learn more about the alleged practice of cow-tipping and read the wikipedians’ report that “According to popular belief, cows can easily be pushed over without much force because they are slow-moving, slow-witted and weak-legged, have a high center of gravity and sleep standing up. Numerous publications have debunked cow-tipping as a myth. Cows do not sleep standing up, nor do their knees lock, making the act of cow-tipping impossible.” (See, you actually learned something by staying with me this far into the blog.)

 

Please, furthermore, don’t expect us to suggest that current efforts to find a new look and logo for CLENE’s materials might somehow involve the image of a cow being tipped over while engaged in learning—at least not unless other CLENE members and ALA’s wonderful membership director, John Chrastka, want to make a connection I’m not willing to make right now. (No, John, I won’t hold my breath waiting for you to take the lead on this one.)

 

But do understand that if we could take the time it took to have that conversation this morning and giggle over improbable images and apparently non-existent pastimes, we and our fellow CE Buzzers certainly can carve out the time to continue thinking out loud here on the blog in the hope that some of the more serious ideas and practices which we document and propose will somehow contribute, overall, to the improvement of the training-teaching-learning arena which we all so clearly cherish. And we hope you’ll join us here on the blog, as well as in CLENE, as we continue promoting creativity and innovation in workplace learning and performance to the benefit of libraries and all we serve.

 

For more information about CLENE and how to join the group, please follow this link.

 

 

Elliott Masie has just released his Learning Resources Barometer, the results of a survey to determine how learning budgets and resources are enduring the tough economic times.

The survey measures the increase or decrease in:

  • learning budgets
  • learning departments
  • volume of elearning modules
  • volume of f2f classes
  • amount of employee travel for learning
  • use of social learning
  • and more…

Check it out to see if there are any surprises. While you’re there, take a look at the Social Learning survey results. Where do you think your staff training sits on the scale of things?

PRESENT AT ALA at the CLENE Training Showcase!
http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/rts/clenert/trainingshowcase

ala_chicago_09_logo
Does your library have a staff training or staff development program you’re proud of? Is someone from your library attending ALA this summer?

If so, you’re invited to participate in the CLENE Training Showcase where you can share information about your program AND learn about the best practices of other libraries and organizations. There is NO COST to participate! All you do is stand by your table and talk about your cool program with people who stop by. It’s really fun! Applications are due on April 1.

The CLENE Round Table Training Showcase will be Sunday, July 12 from 1:30-3:30 pm. The planning committee is on the lookout for libraries, library organizations, presenters, speakers and vendors to participate – anyone who has a great training or staff development program they’d like to share. CLENE is all about sharing ideas (and stealing ideas ?)so this Training Showcase is the perfect venue. If you have any questions, please give us a call!

The Showcase normally attracts between 200-300 attendees over a period of 2 hours – all of whom are interested in training and staff development. The number of participants (presenters) varies from 20-30. It’s a really fun event with refreshments and lots of door prizes. Each participant has a 6’ draped table on which to put a portable table-top display unit, handouts or other related materials.

Please see CLENE Round Table Training Showcase website for more information. There’s a link on the main page for the Training Showcase Page with even more info about the Showcase, along with two online application forms – one for those wishing to participate and one for those want to be a sponsor or a donor.

There are a few photos from last year’s Training Showcase in Anaheim in the Dec. 2008 CLENExchange Newsletter.

For more information, contact either Pat Carterette, pcarterette@georgialibraries.org or404-235-7124 OR Melissa Lattanzi at lattanzm@neo-rls.org or 330.847.7744, extension 12

Networked TeacherThere is a lot of talk about the new wired and networked student, but where does that leave teachers and trainers?

Alec Couros considers what it means to be a networked teacher and his ideas informed the last minute of this video on The Networked Student.

Networked Teacher roles Far from being rendered obsolete, the networked teacher has a powerful set of functions in the realm of social learning. Relieved of the sage-on-the-stage burden, teachers can explore new territory.

  • Learning architect: helps students to build learning networks
  • Modeler: provides guidance when students get stuck
  • Learning concierge: helps students with communication etiquette and how and where to ask for information
  • Connected learning incubator: provides guidance on how to vet resources and identify quality information
  • Network sherpa: organizes the mountains of information
  • Synthesizer: helps students navigate beyond the  course and develop real knowledge for their futures
  • Change agent: helps students to “creatively solve the world’s problems”

These are good roles to consider in terms of “training” (outmoded term) library staff, but don’t you think all of these roles could apply to librarians and their patrons of all ages?

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