Blog - Jo Alcock Consulting
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I’m currently on my way back from the UKSG Conference 2017 and am busy reflecting on what a great few days I’ve had. The tiredness has hit me harder this time (I don’t know if it’s because I'm getting older, the fact I’m not sleeping well at the moment, or because I was presenting a workshop on a different topic to normal), but despite the exhaustion it’s been brilliant. I’ve vlogged reflections during the three days, and have posted these to my YouTube channel and embedded them at the end of this post, but I wanted to share a few key...

I've recently been working on a couple of videos on research methods. I was asked by the CILIP Library and Information Research Group if I'd be interested in producing a video on focus groups and one on surveys that they could use in an online course. I've been keen to develop more video-based materials so thought this was a good opportunity to explore different software options and practice my planning, recording and editing skills. I looked into a number of different software options (including Adobe Spark which is a free web-based tool and great for short videos to get a message across...

A few weeks ago I conducted some very important research* on the snack preferences of librarians. I promised I'd share the findings so this post shares some of the highlights from the research. Over the last few years I've learnt a bit about the chocolate preferences of librarians through the activities in my focus group workshops - for anyone who is interested, the findings suggest that Cadburys Roses aren't so popular when compared to Cadbury Heroes or Celebrations; Bounty are the marmite of the chocolate world (either loved or hated by most people); and Creme Egg Twisted are generally a highlight. Perhaps...

Another Friday, another CILIP workshop! This time last week I went to Manchester for a portfolio building workshop organised by CILIP North West. I'm keen to continue to make progress on my Fellowship; ideally I'd like to submit my portfolio by June. I've done lots of development activities, applied what I've learnt, reflected (some of which has been recorded, some which needs to be recorded, some which has fed into future activities), and now it's time to start thinking about pulling it all together and seeing if I have any further gaps or if I think I've met the assessment...

Last week I attended the CILIP West Midlands Member Network Members' Day (yes indeed; quite a title!). I haven't managed to make the last couple of years of these events due to clashes so was pleased to be able to attend this year (and even better to attend when you're not speaking or organising!). https://twitter.com/ayubkhan786/status/830048039125544961 The focus for this year's event was on learning technologies, and we had a series of presentations as well as some discussions on the topic. A few things I discovered or was reminded of during the day: I am rubbish at finding venues I haven't been to before It...

I've been self-employed for six months now. In some respects it seems like only yesterday that I was writing my blog post about my first day as a freelancer, and in some respects it seems like a lifetime ago. So what have I been up to in the last six months? Here are some of the things I've been working on: leadership development programmes facilitating action learning sets providing coaching developing and delivering workshops (including the one on statistics; blog post about that to come with some Very Important research findings) analysing usage data evaluating training researching user needs planning...

2016 has received a lot of flak for being a generally crappy year. On paper though, my 2016 has been a pretty good year. We sold our house after a stressful and drawn out process - hoorah! We settled into a new area in a house we love closer to family and friends. I've had some great days and evenings exploring places, discovering new restaurants, and doing fun activities. I came to the realisation that I wanted to freelance so I left my job and I've had a successful first few months as a freelancer. I've strengthened existing friendships and...

I recently read a book about portfolio careers (I’m coming to the realisation that this seems to be what suits me and what I’d like to do with my freelancing). One of the things the book talks about is the importance of knowing our ‘motivated skills’ which the authors explain as things we're good at, enjoy and are proud of. I’ve done the StrengthsFinder before, but I liked the idea of the exercise in the book to help identify our motivated skills so I’ve been working on this as part of my freelance planning. One of the things I found incredibly...

I love a challenge. I've always loved puzzles and games and I'm motivated by goals. I like to stretch myself. I'm competitive; mostly against myself but also sometimes against others (fortunately I'm not a bad loser at all though so although I will always try hard I don't mind at all if I lose). When it's something where I'm trying to beat myself though, I'm not usually so happy when I fail as I always want to improve. Last year I participated in the Goodreads Reading Challenge and set myself the challenge of reading 20 books. I exceeded this (and rekindled my...