Invest in Yourself - Page 3
With very little time you can build your skills, improve your performance, and enhance your opportunities
Posted Mon, 03/22/2010 - 11:12
Grow your goals
The next logical step, then, is to identify and invest in your goals. Think about them and pick the one you’d like to grow the most in during the coming months. If you take the time up front to create a development plan around a goal, you’ll find the investment in time and learning will more directly get you where you want to go. When you finish your training plan, re-examine your goals. Adapt them, as necessary, and outline the next training program that will help you support them. You’ll be making progress and moving in the right direction, rather than playing “hit and miss” with whatever today’s emergency issue happens to be.
What’s the payoff? As an answer, I ask you to picture the new boss out there who was recently promoted into a leadership position for which she was neither trained nor ready. Oh, there’s so much to learn and to do. She can either dive in, dedicating every minute of her days to dog-paddling just to stay afloat; or she can decide to improve at the job, while she’s getting her work done. After a full year, she’ll undoubtedly have accomplished a lot. Maybe she’ll have straightened out the collection mess, re-established networks within the community, solved some staffing issues, or perhaps even brought in a grant.
But what else could have happened if she’d also been dedicated to ongoing development? Stronger skills? New ideas? Creative options? Less frustration? Maybe even a better second year?
An investment in yourself to always keep learning and growing will pay off again and again, with benefits affecting your coworkers, your staff, your customers, your library, and, ultimately, your career. Especially in these changing and challenging times, we can’t be too busy to get better.
CATHERINE HAKALA-AUSPERK is a graduate of Kent State University and a 25-year public library veteran. She currently serves as deputy director of the Cleveland Heights–University Heights (Ohio) Public Library. Her book Be a Great Boss will be published by ALA Editions this summer.