General Archives - Jo Alcock Consulting
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General

It's been a while since my last post, longer than usual anyway. I'm not going to apologise for this; partly because I get fed up with reading posts from people apologising for not blogging (personally, I'm all for organic blogging rather than forcing blog posts), but mainly because it's sort of been a conscious decision whilst I've been contemplating.

I've been settling into my new job (almost 5 weeks now, gone so quickly!), and with that a whole new institution (and accompanying procedures and acronyms) to understand, and a whole new way of working. So far I am really enjoying it, and it's getting more exciting now I'm getting stuck into the actual work, but it's a very different world to get used to.  Technically I'm still part of an academic library department, and I still refer to myself as a librarian, but truthfully my job role doesn't need any library experience or qualifications (although it is an advantage), and I could successfully fulfill my job role and very rarely set foot in a library. I know I'm not unique in this way, there are a number of people within the profession who don't work in libraries; information specialists, independent consultants, and others working on library/information service related projects such as myself. But it's taking a bit of getting used to after 5 years of being fully immersed in working in libraries.

View as I left my last day working in a library
View as I left my last day working in a library (imagine it's changed a lot since!)

Apparently these are the roles I usually take on in a team, according to Belbin anyway. As part of my induction in my new job (which I'm loving by the way!), I completed a questionnaire about the role I play in a team. I was interested to know this anyway, and it's useful for my colleagues to know. I'm now part of a small team so if anything it's even more important to know these things about each other so we can work to each other's strengths and make sure we're working as an effective team.

Today, 20th August 2010, is the last day of my contract at  University of Wolverhampton (last Friday was my final working day). Having begun employment as a Graduate Trainee on 1st September 2005, I worked there for almost 5 years. During that time I had four different contracts, three different bosses, two different job titles, and worked at three different campuses. I worked with some fabulous colleagues, many of whom I am sure I'll keep in touch with.

Spring cleaning in the home...

We've made a conscious decision this year to focus our efforts (and finances!) into improving our home. We've lived here almost 5 years now, owned the house for over 3 years, and yet still there are things we're not happy with. Over the last few weeks we've been gradually getting things sorted - we've finally replaced the bath with one that doesn't soak our floor every time we shower, added a shower screen, got some new kitchen lights, done some more work in the garden, and re-painted the kitchen ceiling. There's still a lot of little jobs to do but it's been very therapeutic to get some of these things sorted. Last weekend I decided I'd sort out our paperwork and finally organised all my statements and bills going right back to when I started University in 2002. We use online banking and keep track of our spending on an Excel spreadsheet, but I had kept hold of all our paper bills and statements too, so it was well overdue a sort out!

...spring cleaning elsewhere

The organising process has also rubbed off to other areas of my life too - my desk/dressing table is now clear of clutter, my dissertation paperwork is all neatly organised, and my desk at work is nice and tidy too. I've also been organising my online accounts, getting rid of unused accounts and tidying up accounts I do use. Here's some of the stuff I've been up to online to clean up my accounts:

[picappgallerysingle id="246905"]I thought I'd continue the tradition I started last year and end 2009 by posting a reflective blog post about the year. It's been a year full of ups and downs, mainly ups thankfully - although at times it's been difficult to focus on the positives, I've learnt a lot this year about myself. This time last year I had recently started my first professional librarian job, and one year in I'm really enjoying it - it was definitely worth all the hard work completing my Diploma. I've had the opportunity to work on projects such as improving the way we...

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="500" caption="New Year Celebrations in London (from i is Ashby on Flickr)"][/caption] Firstly, I hope any readers who celebrate have had a wonderful Christmas season and enjoyed the break - I certainly have. It's given me chance to see family, spend time at home relaxing with my boyfriend and our kittens, catch up on sleep, do some cross-stitching (for next year's Christmas cards!) and learn a bit of Photoshop. As it's the last day of the year I thought I'd take the opportunity to reflect back on the year and look forward to 2009. 2008 has been quite a big...

I've spent the last two weeks in Orlando, Florida and thoroughly enjoyed it. I have been across to the States before but it was a few years ago now and I visited Washington DC, Boston, and New York City. Visiting Orlando was very different, everywhere was very flat and things were definitely a lot more tourist oriented. As this was purely a personal holiday, you may think its unlikely that I can relate my experiences at Disney to my work in an academic library. However, something which really stood out to both myself and my partner was the excellent service we...

It really doesn't seem very long at all since we were all stressing about the Millennium bug! Thought I'd write a quick post to wish everyone a Happy New Year and think forward to 2008. I'm not really one for specific resolutions but I do like to try to think about my main aims in life and how I'm going to get there. By then end of 2008 I hope to have completed my Diploma in Information and Library Studies and become that all important "qualified information professional" - better get back to the studying really as I've done none over...

Writing about: pdf24 and their tools for Pageflakes and iGoogle. As my home PC, work laptop and work PC all have different versions of Office on, I seem to be forever converting documents and adjusting them to suit wherever I need to print. For example, I recently used our home PC (which has Office 2007) to make a nice fancy report, but some of the items weren't compatible with Office 2000 or 2003 and when I took it into work to finish it off and print it, it moved all my page numbers around and shifted things to different pages. All very...

I haven't posted for a while, I've been spending most of my free time preparing for an interview (and reading Harry Potter, I'd only read the first three!). I have been working part time for the last year, which has been good as it has given me extra time to study, however it has been more of a struggle financially and I have tended to spend my free day each week catching up with housework, going to town, the bank, the doctors, etc etc! A full time job came up at my level so I decided to apply for it, and...