Reflection Archives - Jo Alcock Consulting
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Reflection

I was recently interviewed by Jo Wood for her new Librarians With Lives podcast where she interviews people who work in the library and information profession about their career history, their passions, their dreams, and some lighter questions too. Jo approached me a few weeks ago and we recorded the interview in August. She did give me an idea by email of the sorts of things we might discuss, though I didn't prepare too much so a lot of the conversation was spur of the moment (though Jo did an excellent job at steering the conversation so when I listened...

This year for the SLA Conference (see my review of SLA Conference) I was conference planner on behalf of the SLA Leadership and Management Division, a voluntary role that I started at the conference last summer. My role was to plan educational and social sessions on behalf of the division, and coordinate our kiosk in the exhibition. Although there were some challenges along the way, I'm really proud of the programme we put together. The speakers were all excellent and great to work with. I received some lovely feedback from members who had attended the sessions and gained a lot...

It's been over two months since SLA (Special Libraries Association) Conference 2017 ended. I'd intended to blog a little sooner but I've been somewhat pre-occupied. During the time following the conference I travelled with my partner from Phoenix (where the conference was held) to Sedona (where we went off roading), then Grand Canyon (where I scared my partner by standing close to the edge), then Las Vegas (where my partner became my husband at the Tunnel of Love drive-thru wedding venue), then Orlando (where we 'Disneymoon'ed and saw a failed rocket launch). We've been back for a few weeks though...

Wow. A whole year of being self-employed. It feels somehow like yesterday, yet also like a lifetime ago. In some senses it seems like nothing has changed, and in other senses it seems like everything has changed. What have I learnt or been reminded of in my first year of self-employment? Time is precious Having an hourly rate rather than an annual salary has, for me, made me much more conscious of how I am spending each day. I've always been someone who tends to spend a long time on each piece of work until it's as good as I can get...

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 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...

Given all the personal changes that have been happening in the last few months (selling our home, finding one to rent, relocating, handing in my notice, starting work as a freelancer) it's fair to say my CILIP Fellowship progress has stalled. I had a statement drafted, but obviously this was on the basis of me working in my previous role so much of it is now out-of-date. I'm still keen to work towards Fellowship though, and have arranged to meet with my mentor tomorrow. Being the deadline driven person that I am, I therefore spent today reviewing where I'm at. I...

It's August 1st 2016 and it's a very exciting day. Today marks my first day of self-employment. It's been almost 6 years since I've been in a traditional librarian post, but I've been employed by at least one library every day since August 2005 so today is a big change for me. I blogged last time I changed jobs how strange it was to not have a library. Today I have no library, no employer, no manager, no colleagues, no office (though I do have my home office which is what I've been using for months anyway!). I have no organisation employing...