Select Page

Time to leave that awful job? Make sure you do this first!

Sometimes even the most ideal job goes south.

The boss you loved working for gets promoted to a great new position, but her replacement is the spawn of the devil.

Your company, which for decades had been known for valuing its employees, is bought by an equity fund whose only value is stakeholder profits.

The job you love is “re-engineered” into a new set of responsibilities, several (if not all) of which make you crazy…. (more…)

Which font should you use for your resume?

Recently a friend of mine who specializes in resume coaching explained to me that anyone still using the Times New Roman font on their resumes was absolutely dooming their application the second it left their printer. I, who had assumed TNR was a pretty reputable choice as far as fonts go, was surprised to hear this (and in fact wondered if she was just being her usual joyously opinionated self).

But it turns out that recruiters, designers, and resume experts do have some pretty strong preferences when it comes to resume fonts, both best and worst. Notes a Monster.com interview, “You want to stick with fonts that are legible, neutral and easy to read,” says Amanda Augustine, career expert at TopResume. “Recruiters are scanning resumes for 6 seconds, and if they can’t get past an unprofessional font, your resume may get overlooked.”

Based on checking several different “best fonts for resumes” list, the following consensus emerged: (more…)

12 LinkedIn headlines for LIS students

In a recent coaching session with several MLIS students, we worked on their LinkedIn profiles with the goal of positioning each of the students as someone intent on joining the ranks of LIS practitioners. In other words, a serious, engaged, almost-professional-level contributor.

Realistically, and quoting well-known LIS leader Jan Chindlund, you become a professional the day you take you very first class. Sometimes, however, it can be so easy to get wrapped up in assignments, group projects, exams, and student activities that you miss the reason you’re in grad school, which is to launch a rewarding LIS career.

Your LinkedIn profile will help you start launching that career while you’re still in grad school, so it’s a free, highly valuable tool you want to take advantage of. The challenge: as a student, how do you create a headline (with only 120 characters, including spaces) that starts letting people how terrific you are right now and how even more terrific you’re going to be at graduation? (more…)

Becoming a free-agent learner: 7 learning hacks to level up your LIS skills

We live in the age of the free-agent learner – which is really good news for LIS professionals. Because as a free-agent learner, regardless of your circumstances, you’ve got multiple ways to expand your skill set.

Which options work best for you?
You get to determine which options are best for you at any given time. To do that, it helps to ask yourself some key questions.

For example, do you prefer a formal learning experience (that is, interacting with an instructor in a face-to-face or online classroom, either with fellow students or independently)? Or perhaps an informal experience, such as working with a mentor or learning community, reading a book, taking an online tutorial? (more…)

How to keep a career time-out from becoming a career drop-out

Perhaps you’ve decided to stay home to spend more time with your young children for several years.

Or your elderly parents are beginning to need more attention from you and it’s compromising your ability to work full-time.

Or you’ve had a major health setback, and recovery is likely to sideline you for a substantial period of time.

A career timeout, however, doesn’t have to mean career derailment. By staying professionally engaged and connected, you’ll be able to keep doors open for you when you’re ready to return.  (more…)

I didn’t even know that job existed!

young woman smiling hitting her head - aha momentOne of the downsides of giving LIS students and professionals career advice is that you’ve pretty much got to follow your own advice if you want to have any credibility at all (translation from my students: “do as I say, not as I do” isn’t going to fly!).

So with that in mind, I’m following one of my key career mantras, which is to never stop learning new stuff. I decided to teach myself how to create e-books so I could share more of the webinar information I provide for students at LIS grad schools. (more…)

Making the most of your starter job

Or, why you should consider that job in Smalltown, USA

 

Female student working in the libraryRecently I had an opportunity to work with a young woman who had just graduated from an MLIS program. She was unsure of how to proceed with her job search given the precarious job market for librarians (and everybody else).

This young woman had never worked in a library before, and, like many of us when we complete our degrees, wanted to get a job in the same town where her university was located. But the reality is that with little or no library experience and facing the stiff competition that comes in an area flooded with fellow MLIS graduates, this young woman’s job prospects would be dim at best.

In fact, probably her best opportunities lie in a direction often avoided if not dismissed by recent grads: working for a library in Smalltown, USA.

(more…)

Career branding for introverts

How to tell the world you’re terrific when you don’t want to talk to anybody

 

Personal branding – showcasing your professional strengths – is one of the most important aspects of building a resilient career. However, if you’re an introvert, the idea of telling others about yourself can be unnerving at best, nausea-inducing at worst.

So what if your “elevator speech” generally consists of a muttered “which floor do you want?” The good news is that you’re living in the right era, because these days you can do a major portion of your brand-building online. (more…)

Use Google for Scholarly Research? Yep, and Here’s How

Harnessing Power of GoogleIn his excellent guide Harnessing the Power of Google: What Every Researcher Should Know (Libraries Unlimited, 2017), author Christopher C. Brown asserts that:

Librarians often hear from students that their instructor said not to use Google in their research. I believe that what is meant in most cases is that students shouldn’t only use resources that they just found with simple Google searches. Too many times students cite Wikipedia as an authority for their research. But what this book is arguing is that there is a proper place for Google in academic research.

Not only does the author argue his point successfully, he does every academic librarian and serious researcher the favor of showing them how to use Google so that it truly can become a credible component of rigorous scholarly and business research. (more…)

Handling the interview stumper: what’s your biggest weakness?

For most people, just talking about their strengths in an interview can be pretty challenging.

But talking about your weaknesses in a way that doesn’t sink your hiring prospects can feel even more challenging. Most of us can come up with plenty of weaknesses, but which one is okay to mention in an interview situation that won’t immediately doom you to the “rejects” pile?

One way to approach your response is to consider what an interviewer is trying to learn from the weaknesses question. Essentially, the goal is to not to make you feel unbelievable awkward, but rather to understand how well you know yourself (your self-awareness skills). Then, they’ll want to know how you would plan to address that weakness, or what steps you’ve taken to start working on it.

So what should you say (or not)? (more…)