Friday, May 15, 2009

Changing job for librarians

The library professionals may be distinguished depending on their nature of job, subject they serve, or expertise they develop (e.g. Corporate Librarian, Medical Librarian, Serials Librarian). But the basic skills for being library professional required are almost same irrespective of you work in Educational (school / college / University) or Special (Public / Research / Subject oriented) library etc.

I remember, when I was interviewed for my second job, the member from the interview panel asked me how I will be able to serve my new users who are in the field of rural development being an NGO whereas I had experienced of working in science background of research institute!!

I replied that we library professionals are so trained that we can locate any kind of information irrespective of subject background. In the initial phase one may require time to learn and get the nuance of new subject but with our skills it is not a difficult task at all…

The question is how one can be prepared while there is job change. It may happen in following situations:

1. If one gets promoted
2. Transferred to new location or new department
3. Change in job by proper planning with complete preparation

The librarian may face dilemma while change in the job due to numerous factors such as:

a. Lack of skills required for new position e.g. Using technology for library automation /
b. Mentally not prepared for new responsibilities in case job change is unexpected
c. New atmosphere for starting all over again as change in users, their requirements, the new
library system etc.

In case, the person decides with proper planning with full preparation then it is easy to face new challenges but still one needs to do homework for smooth transition. Before applying for a new job, the library professional should be aware and satisfied about the responsibities, skills required for particular job, the present situation of library or information center, the parent organization to serve, the nature of users and their requirements etc. & would be expectations from management side & challenges. One needs to study all these aspects and prepare accordingly.

The change in job is must sometimes even in same organization to avoid monotonous routine, to learn something new. In any circumstances one must remain positive and prepare himself / herself as per changing situations in the library profession to face present and future challenges by acquiring new skills whenever required.

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