One of the weirdest things about ALA, to me, is that a bulk of the work happens on the weekend. So on Saturday and Sunday we’re running about, going to meetings and working a 12+ hour day. I check email through the day, but hardly anything comes in to my work account because it’s the weekend. Then, on Monday (and Friday and Tuesday) it’s much quieter at ALA, but the work email floods in. Just a weird element to the ALA experience.
The LITA Town Hall Breakfast
I really enjoy the LITA Town Hall breakfast. I’ve been to either three or four now, and every time I’ve been glad to have attended. They are planned by LITA’s Vice President and tend to focus on issues around what LITA is or should be and how to position the organization for the future. They also have a fancy breakfast. This one was lead by a consultant that had small groups consider different aspects of LITA (competing organizations, what areas of IT LITA should address, how we can collaborate better, etc) and then share out to the group. I got there a bit early and missed the formation of the Twittering/Google Docing/Live Blogging table, but felt like I was sitting there because of their awesome technology use. Though I was sitting with my group, I could follow along with a larger discussion (including people across the country) in a number of ways. This is what was on my laptop:
The panel on the left is a live blog, and the columns on the right were for friendfeed and twitter. This is an example of an awesome use of technology, and a great way to get more voices heard. I’m not sure what will come of the brainstorming in the meeting, but at a minimum, this demonstration of how these tools can be used effectively was worth it.
Working with Multimedia
I’m on a panel for ACRL on career strategies this March and as part of this, we want to show video of other’s perspectives. I said I would gather video from folks, and luckily several of the LITA BIGWIG group said they would help. THANKS to you, and I’ll send you your video once I have access to better internet!
Afterwards I enjoyed a lunch and conversation with Kenley and headed back towards the convention center.
Continuing Library Education Network and Exchange Round Table Discussion Group on Staff Development
Lori Reed and Peter Bromberg talked me into attending this discussion group and I’m glad I did. The discussion had a decidedly public library focus, but there are obviously more similarities than differences in training in both environments. This particular discussion focused on issues that aren’t as pressing in our environment, but still very interesting. Some of the themes of the meeting were: differences between issues that can be resolved with training and with strong supervision, online training, the relationship of management and training, our perception of ourselves vs. our patron’s perceptions, and a lot of vocabulary issues. We talked about terminology for library staff, working for programing, and thinking carefully about the words we use. For example, a program on customer service might get more attendance if it is called “hospitality.” Or a conflict management program might have better reception if it’s called “understanding differences.”
Even though today only had two meetings, I was in the convention center until 4:00. After that I warmed up in the hotel room, worked with email, blogged, ran out for dinner, and started packing up. Tomorrow morning will include my last meeting, checking out, catching a shuttle, and (hopefully) flying back home. It looks like my Twitter friends have made it out safely and on time, so I’m hoping the same is true tomorrow for me! My flight leaves at 1:15 and I’m flying through Atlanta, so I’m hopeful!