I’ve taken longer to get round to Thing 5 (Reflecting), partly because I was busy in work but also because I didn’t know what to write. I could easily write a list of what I’ve learnt so far, but it wouldn’t be very reflective. I know I am a reflective practitioner in work (for example, after meetings which I chair I often reflect on how it went, whether it was useful for people, what was achieved by the meeting, how it could be better next time etc) but applying it to 23Things is taking me longer.
So I’ll start with what I do know! On the ‘skills learnt’ front I have learnt how to make a Scoop.it magazine issue, with my first one being on e-books and libraries. ‘So what?’ is the reflective practitioner’s cry. Well, I can see how it will be useful for me to use this for current awareness, not only for linking to my library blog, but also as a ‘library current awareness’ service for librarians in Wales. It also has potential in my workplace to be used by the other sectors (museums and archives) and through feedback on the first issue I made I have discovered that library staff can access the Scoop.it site even if other social media channels are blocked where they work. This again suggests it could be a useful way of reaching librarians in Wales – an important part of my job. I shall definitely be applying this learning to my job in the future.
Other 23Thing things so far have covered personal online brand, RSS feeds, Twitter and blogging. I haven’t learnt new skills with these things as I already use them, but it has reminded me again that I really must sort out my library RSS feeds in Netvibes.
I have enjoyed all the tasks so far, although I have not put as much time into looking at the blogs of other CPD23Thing participants as I should have. I thought I might use Thing 5 week to do that, but we’re now already into Thing 6… .
I’m comfortable with having a visible online presence, and I’m comfortable with putting my thoughts down ‘on paper’ (as it were) on the ol’ interweb , having been blogging in a library capacity and a yoga capacity for a year now.
I have struggled a little bit with the time taken to complete each Thing and have spent free time at home on it as well. But, as it’s for my personal learning and development I feel it’s ok for some of the time to be my time and not all work time. It’s more akin to doing a study course than attending a day’s training course in work time.
I’m also learning what I like about other people’s blogs. For me to want to follow a library blog I do prefer to see at least a name of the person, a picture if possible (of them, not a cat, cute though cats are), some contact details and to know more about them than some of the CPD23Things bloggers reveal. I find it hard to comment or like a blog post when I don’t even know the person’s name.
I also have found some of the blog posts to be quite short – for me, to do justice to each Thing I’ve found myself writing quite a lot. Maybe I’m just a verbose waffler. I’ve also found the most useful blogs to be the ones that link to something else.
This all helps me think about MY blogs – are they helpful? Do I provide enough links for people to follow up on things? Do I have enough information about me easily available? This may reflect an element of my job role which is advice and support to librarians in Wales – if I want library staff in Wales to feel they can approach me I believe they need to see who I am, get a feel for what I’m like through my online presence, and have various ways of contacting me. I also like to be useful and helpful – I am, at heart, a librarian.
I’ve learnt that I’m also still addicted to checking my site stats… .
UPDATE – after writing the above I then spent well over an hour looking at other CPD23Things blogs, starting with Wales again. It’s a shame that quite a few are already behind on Thing 2 or 3. And I’m still struggling with the lack of names. Maybe this reflects more on me than them – I’m in a relatively ‘public’ profile in my job, but other people may not be.