Who Are You?


In a meeting this morning, a colleague related that the first concept discussed in an Organizational Development workshop was "self awareness." Most of us nodded our heads sagely.
The foundational requirement for self awareness in positive learning and change is a truism for a reason. It's true. And when you say it, people nod their heads. And we pat ourselves on the back because of all the people in the room, we, undoubtedly, are the *most* self-aware.
By definition, it is unlikely to know the places where you are *not* self-aware. (Yup. I'm smart like that.) There are some ways to find your blind spots. Stay tuned. I'll explore a few of these in future posts.


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I just felt I needed to say something.


I'm easily amused.

It's a show about nothing!


Here are your tasks:

  • Tell me. What is it you do, exactly?

  • Write a description for the staff newsletter about the project.

  • Why should I go to that training?

  • Fit that idea into a Twitter post!

  • Find a mate! (like Dilbert, here with a well-crafted message...)


This website from Harvard helps you craft your elevator speech. Nifty tool.

The elevator speech is a finely tuned message geared for delivery in approximately one minute - for example, in the amount of time you have when on an elevator with the target of your message.

What's in a name? Apparently motivation, interest, application, and all sorts of other good things.

How do you "sell" your workshops to internal staff? A lot of it has to do with the name of the training. Is it a dry descriptor (Email Basics), or a snappy eye-catcher (Collaborating with Others using Microsoft Word)?

It is not just the title that matters, if they continue reading, potential participants want to know that the workshop contains useful application, relevance, and is content-rich. Staff will want to sign up for a session that sounds interesting, engaging, perhaps even (gasp!) fun.

I know this isn't rocket science (is rocket science even rocket science?), and, at the same time, I feel like a need a major algorithm to attract people to our workshops.

What a tangled web we weave...

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Staff Education & Development (SED), "my" department, has a responsibility to develop Libraries employees in a way that supports the overall strategic direction of the organization.  One problem of maintaining this programming element is, once I back up to the 30,000 foot view of the organization from above, things get complicated. From that height, I can see that everything is connected. Everything.

In that context, determining departmental priorities and taking action becomes more difficult. Touch one part of the web, and the whole thing trembles in response. While that isn't necessarily a bad thing, it can create "analysis paralysis." To overcome this, at some point, we just need to do something. We might not intersect the web in the exact correct place, but we can recover when we fail, and continue moving in the right direction, finding or creating the right path.

SED has several paths to tread (or create!) right now:

  • Finishing and Implementing the New Employee Orientation Program

  • Creating a new and vastly more usable departmental wiki,which will be a living resource for staff

  • Ongoing creation and identification of e-modules for just-in-time staff learning

  • Defining the deeper connection of partnership between SED and IT

  • Packaging our training modules together in ways that help employees decide what learning activities will help them achieve their goals

  • Ongoing support of time sensitive requested training and consultation

  • Much, much more

None of this situation is unique to SED, or even Human Resource Development programs in general. In any case, how do we do all of these at once? The answer is, we can't. We leverage partnerships and get input where we are able. We learn as we go, and we make mistakes.

We do the best we can, dancing along the surface of the web.

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