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Best Habits for Job Success


Starting a new job can be an exciting but overwhelming experience. To ensure a smooth transition and set yourself up for success, it’s important to develop the best habits early on. Here are three habits to focus on when you start your new job.

Be On Time or Early Every Day

One of the most important habits to have when starting a new job is to be punctual. This means being on time for meetings, arriving to work on time, and meeting deadlines. Even if you’re working remotely, be early to sign onto your computer every day. Being punctual shows that you are reliable, responsible, and respectful of your colleagues’ and supervisor’s time.

Clear Communication

Communication is key to success in any job. When starting a new job, it’s important to take the time to understand the communication style of your colleagues and supervisor. Be sure to ask questions when you’re unsure of something and actively listen to others when they are speaking.

Communicating effectively will help you build relationships and get things done more efficiently. This is the foundation a solid and trusting work relationship.

Take Initiative

Another important habit to have when starting a new job is to take initiative. Don’t be afraid to speak up and share your ideas or offer to take on new projects. This shows that you are proactive and willing to take on extra responsibilities.

It will also help you learn and grow in your new role. You might make mistakes, but showing you are willing and able to do the job (and then some) is priceless.

Growth Mindset

In addition to these habits, it’s also important to be flexible, open-minded, and willing to learn. Your new job will come with its own set of challenges and being adaptable will help you navigate them. Also, don’t be afraid to ask for help or guidance when you need it. Building a strong relationship with your colleagues and managers will make the transition to your new job much smoother.

Starting a new job can be daunting, but by focusing on these four habits, you can set yourself up for success. By being punctual, communicating effectively, and taking initiative with a grow mindset, you’ll be able to make a great impression.

Building relationships and excelling in your new role will be second nature. Remember to be patient with yourself and enjoy your journey. Best of Luck!

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Selling Skills

Selling Skills

Let’s face it, we don’t like being sold anything, ever.  But we all sell something, every day whether we realize it or not.  Do you know how those selling skills will help you in everyday life? Here are ways to influence to create solutions and harmony in your life.


Even if you are not a parent, you have parents, siblings, or family. In life we enjoy getting our way. Whether it’s family gatherings, vacations, or just getting the kids up in the morning. The key to selling your “idea” is to understand, that people “buy” or listen to likable people.

That’s why the old saying, “you get more with honey than vinegar” applies here. Build your case in a positive manner. Remember, the mantra, “What’s in it for me…” You need to “sell” your idea as a benefit to the other person. The kids will get pancakes if they get up right now for school. The vacation to Hawaii, rather than Colorado, will enable you a warm, sunny getaway during the winter. Remember “WIIFM,” and think what the other person really wants or how they benefit.

Buyers and Their Emotions

As a buyer, or the receiving end of a transactions, did you know you “buy” based on your emotions? We all buy based on feelings and justify the transaction based on logical information afterwards. Here me out and think about your last purchase. Did you really “need” that new outfit? Does your kid “need” or “want” those new shoes, and why? The type of clothing and shoes purchased will be based on trends or what all the other kids are wearing.

Understanding your emotions before you buy something is important, because the salesperson will want to know your feelings. Asking questions to understand what you are looking for or why you need something is Selling 101. Sharing stories to gather information will also help understand your motivation as a buyer. Think about how many times you’ve said, “I’m just looking.” I say it all the time. But when I’m ready to decide, I need that person’s expertise and knowledge to make my purchase.

Trust is Crucial

Finally, having the support after the sale is just as important as the transaction itself. Going back to the kids in the morning and pancakes for breakfast. If the kids get up when you ask them, brush their teeth, then you’d better follow through with pancakes! Trust is the number one reason someone will “buy.”

This trust factor transcends not only accountability but doing what you say you’ll do. But trusting in the follow up conversation if you really have something that solves a problem. Trust and a solid relationship with family, products, or companies all comes from the outcomes and support after the transaction. The ultimate goal is for you to be happy and satisfied with what transpired.

Selling happens every day in our lives and being aware how we “buy” is helpful in everyday life.

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Resume Tips

The first step in any new job hunt or career change is to freshen up or create a new resume. Here are proven tips from Jenny Foss to make your resume stand out for that next interview.

Skills and Value

Highlighting your unique skills and the value you bring the company is the first step in creating a resume. Use a resume template that is easy to read and uses all the real estate on the page.

That said, make sure your resume is no more than two pages in length. Be sure to sue an 11 or 12 size font for easy reading by the reviewer. Only include “technology proficiencies” if you can fit it easily on the second page.

Depending on your industry, it is usually understood that the average applicant is knowledgeable in Microsoft applications, etc. However, if you are a whiz with WordPress then absolutely include this in your “Skills Section.” Your value and job skills need to be near the beginning of your first page and highlighted.

Employment Gaps

With the recent pandemic, many job seekers will have gaps in employment for various reasons. Handling gaps depends upon your specific situation, such as childcare, relocation for a spouse, or being laid off.

Explaining the gap depends upon the amount of time that has elapsed, the industry, and if you’re changing careers. There are many ways to address gaps on a resume. Be prepared to tell your story at the interview in a succinct manner.

Grammar and Organization

Finally, proofread your resume very carefully. Have another person review and proofread for typos and continuity. A recent poll on LinkedIn taken stated that hiring managers felt that zero mistakes or typos should appear on resumes.

Be sure the organization follows the template so the most prominent skills in the job description match the skills in on your resume. Don’t lie, but matching words will help the resume scanning software place you in the “A” pile to interview.

Review the job description carefully and be sure to tailor your resume for each job. The ATS or applicant tracking system will thank you, and you will land that coveted interview. Include the keywords that are used in the job posting on your resume for best results.

Finally, save your resume as a PDF and word document.  Different companies use different formatting when resumes are submitted online. Always double check your download before you click submit for the cleanest and most reader-friendly resume.   Good Luck!

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Library Leadership

Library Schedules

If you are new to managing employees or unsure how to handle your team’s schedules with pandemic restrictions, read on for some tips to help navigate library scheduling.

Plan Holidays and Vacations

Most organizations will need some notice if extended time away from work is requested by an employee. Some workplaces even have minimum timelines for these requests to be approved.  The farther out schedules are, the easier unexpected situations are to address.   Using a spreadsheet or scheduling software, develop a template. Figure the minimum staff needed to work at customer service positions at the library.

With your minimum staff number in mind, map out six to eight weeks of schedules inputting vacations, programs, and time off. Use remaining staff available to develop your desk schedule to serve the public. Keep in mind your customer foot traffic will be less due to Covid closures.

Rotating Staff

If your library is small or has only one service desk, scheduling can be simpler. If your library has multiple floors or has a spacious floor plan, then two or even more service points are the norm. Does your library have a dedicated phone line or does the entire staff answer the phone as needed? Another service point, in the call center, requires scheduling attention.

The recommendation is to rotate professional librarians and paraprofessionals between all service points for seamless customer experiences. Leadership roles should also consider covering public service points, to promote cross training opportunities. In addition, this increases empathy for your team’s interactions with the public too.

Resolving Concerns

Any manager has fielded complaints about the schedule “not being fair.”  This is the time to pull out your negotiating skills and leave policy to provide the best answers for scheduling decisions. Employees may not understand about staffing levels, unexpected sick time or prep for programs. Furthermore, being as consistent as possible with every employee is the best method to address conflicts and accusations of favoritism.

Finally, employees love time off the service desk, and managers need to provide a fair and equitable schedule to assist customers and staff.

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Career Development

Organizations will have you train or take self-paced learning courses when starting a new job. When you are a tenured worker or better yet a knowledgeable librarian, what professional development should you focus on? What are the next steps in your career development of librarianship?  Read on for advice to broaden your skillsets. Professional development allows you to excel to the next level in your library career.

Volunteer to Lead

When you are offered an opportunity to lead or be a part of a committee, take it!  For example, leading the annual staff training day or planning for the summer reading program should be on your radar. Plan to participate and provide your valuable input  and leadership.

If you work in an academic library, consider volunteering to work on a grant application to benefit your institution and library. Taking the initiative to lead will show others you have the leadership qualities to move forward.

Develop a Plan

As a professional your own development is up to you. Come up with other methods to excel and stand out in your organization in the specialty you’re pursuing. For example, if you are a youth services librarian, then branch out into another areas. Gain a mentor in a technical area to broaden your skills. However, be of  value to the organization in any area and find your niche.

Looking for opportunities and asking to help in other areas is always appreciated by leadership. You will get you noticed for other openings as they become available. Have a plan or goal in mind and ask the appropriate manager if you can shadow to learn new tasks. Furthermore, take on extra responsibilities to learn a brand new skill. You will thank yourself down the road for taking the leap.

Be Flexible

Keep in mind opportunities will present themselves when you least except them. So, be flexible and take them when they’re offered. Be ready to jump at a chance if a position aligns with your goals and career options.

Finally, timelines and career focus are great, but life is unpredictable. You need to remain open to unique opportunities.  If you’ve worked hard and provide value to an organization, they will snap you up. You both win.  Good Luck and Happy Learning!

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Libraries and Entrepreneurs


Many people dream of becoming entrepreneurs. They look forward to being in control of their own destiny and love building a career. Entrepreneurs are motivated and driven, and they aren’t afraid of hard work. The question is, where can you find resources to help get started? The answer is your local library!

Libraries Provide Access 

There are many research and reference tools for entrepreneurs at public libraries. Online tools that would cost a fortune if you had to purchase them yourself are free. Libraries have resources such as Reference USA, Regional Business News, and Business Source Premier for free.  These databases normally would cost thousands of dollars to access. Public libraries allow free access anytime with a library card and computer. Check to see if your city has multiple library systems, to access different subscriptions from each library. 

Free Patent Information

Checking out a patent or idea before moving forward is an entrepreneur’s first step. It is important to make sure that someone else doesn’t hold a trademark or patent on your idea. Libraries provide patent check resources and trademark information for free. This way, an idea is vetted before investing heavily.  Avoid legal problems down the road by checking out your idea. 

Check Out the Competition

Researching your competition before you start your business is also important. Entrepreneurs want know everything about potential competitors.  Furthermore, the library offers free information on marketing, demographics, and sales volume for the competition. Information that is invaluable for your idea to be successful.  The Reference USA database is the best source to help you gain an edge with your own company.

Raising Capital

Finally, raising capital in any business is essential. You will need to find investors or angel funders.  Libraries have all the information you need to begin the search. You will find resources and people to help you create a pitch, a logo, and more. You can find ideas on how to name your product, and you can learn how to speak in public. Finally, you can learn how to approach investors and sell them on your idea. The public library should be the first stop for any start up, and all the information is free!  Best of luck on your new venture.

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Improving Employee Engagement

With the pandemic changing how we live our lives such as remote work environments or new meeting platforms, engaging your employees is so important. Leaders that connect with their employees regularly with solid communication will keep up morale in their teams. Offering new opportunities to expand skillsets and keeping lines of communication open are vital to boost morale and engagement. Doing this regularly in your library will enable your team to thrive even in the most unpredictable and changing times.

Regular Communication

Having set library staff meetings is a must in our changing work environment especially with in person programming and physical circulation numbers down. During the pandemic lockdown normal routines and work schedules were altered. So, expressing a clear message of what’s going on in your organization helps dispel rumors when no information is present. Clear communication keeps all your stakeholders informed and on the same page. Even in unpredictable times, telling your staff what’s going on is important to keep the lines of communication open and questions and answers flowing. When information is not shared timely or not at all, people tend to create their own answers or share misinformation.

Employee Engagement

Besides regular meetings, having a planned day or even one afternoon to schedule in house training is very important to keep up the skills of your library staff and more importantly keep up morale. Having few if any customers come into the library for more than a year, hit staff hard. Many organizations are still rebounding. Some libraries describe Staff Training Day as the one time all the employees from their entire team can come together. It is an opportunity to network and learn something new to help their patrons and community. Think about having the staff plan the events of the day and act as trainers to help build professional development. Plan an entire day of learning for your librarians and staff to help increase engagement immediately with the team.

Be present

Just because you can work remotely doesn’t mean you should. Being present and seen by your library team is the most important factor to consider when increasing morale. Think about your team of library workers who must show up every day to help customers. Being present for your team and walking the floor shows you care about them and your library community.

Remember to check back every few weeks for other tips to help manage and engage your team! Kathy Husser’s travel blog also has great tips for your next getaway.

Librarian & Entrepreneurship

What Does Library Leadership Look Like?


In most cases, leadership will look the same no matter what industry you find yourself in. However, there are some slight differences between varying fields. For instance, some leaders may have to take more hands-on roles than others. In the library industry especially, leadership is a sought-after skill in many candidates and existing employees. What exactly does library leadership look like, though? 

Commitment to Their Work

Despite what some people may believe about libraries, the daily life of a library leader is often very busy. What keeps these leaders going each day is their commitment to their work, no matter how tiring it can become. Any leader should have a special dedication to their work, but library leaders especially need to stay dedicated to their work. As the world becomes more digital, it is more important than ever for these individuals to reimagine how their establishment can continue being the cornerstone of their community.

Innovative Techniques

There is a reason libraries continue to exist among the digital world. The internet has been in existence for quite some time now and may have tempted many individuals to discontinue their use of libraries. However, libraries are still standing strong amongst this competition, and this is largely due to the innovative leadership qualities of their management teams. Wanting to keep the magic of libraries alive, library leaders have had to creatively seek out ways to spark interest in what they offer while also keeping up with digital trends. Because of the innovative techniques poured out by library leaders, libraries have found a way to compete with new technologies while also keeping their timeless appeal for the oldies at heart.

Community Involvement

One of the biggest ways that library leadership stands out from other types of business leaders is their community involvement. Libraries have always been an integral part of their communities. They’ve been a place for parents to spend time with their children, for students to grab research materials, for at-risk youth to find a safe space, and so much more. Libraries have always hosted incredible learning opportunities and community outreach programs. While many other business leaders consider becoming involved in the community in small ways, library leadership constantly requires a steady involvement with the community. This intentional approach is what is sought out in many library leaders and employees in order to maintain the library’s ability to empower others and change lives.