Sunday, June 29, 2008

2nd Day at ALA: Saturday

By the second day of ALA, I was very envious of those with Mac Airs. My laptop is three years old and not a brick, but a little too heavy to carry around all day. My laptop bag was also starting to fall apart, despite being a good brand. Convention center wireless was working great, but some meetings are held in hotels, and the Hilton, for one, makes you pay for the wireless. :-( Needless to say, I didn't. I also began to wish I had brought my cord for downloading and uploading my conference photos, which may have to be posted after I get home.

I forgot to mention that the first evening I found the display with the EBSCO award winners' photos. It was pretty exciting to see my name and picture along with everyone else's.

I began the day by working at the NMRT Conference Orientation. I helped set up and then handed out tote bags. Seeing the conference newbies and hearing their questions reminded me of how disoriented I was last year at my first conference. I feel much better this year. I'm on the NMRT Orientation committee, and I am trying to decide if I should re-join for this year or try another committee. If I work on Orientation next year I'm going to suggest that we signal the speakers when their time is going to be up and when it's over. I also thought it was great that the LITA rep brought a sign. This was so smart (later I realized that it was one of their fans that they were giving away at the booth). I think they should all bring signs or we should make some for them. I also think the door people should really be prepared to be friendly and answer all kinds of questions about where things are and how the speakers are going to be presented. New attendees are so stressed out that it's important to be both well-informed and encouraging to those who attend (or are even just passing by on their way to a different session).

I then went to my first session on NMRT Resume Review and Mentoring Programs. I remember last year I used the service and was very happy with the advice and encouragement of the academic librarian who looked at my resume. The one thing I wasn't happy with was that the promo for the service made it sound like it was drop-in rather than appointment only. I've noticed that it is the same this year, and since I'll be servicing as a booth greeter on Monday, I'm wondering if I will encounter reviewees who are also confused. The presenters at this session used the term "Conference Anxiety," which is a good one. They explained the history and organization of both these programs (both of which I've used), and said that in the future they are planning to have the resume service be completely web-based to eliminate the intermediary. That sounds excellent.

The first thing on my agenda was the NMRT President's Program/Membership Meeting. The first part of the session was "International Insights for New Librarians" and then the second part was the meeting. I took copious notes since I'll be writing about this for the NMRT newsletter, Footnotes, so I'll save my summary for that venue.

Next I went to a session on Extreme Customer Service. This was heavy on the humor/entertainment value and light on the specifics, but I enjoyed it. They used the term: "The Platinum Rule." Instead of the golden rule of treat others the way you want to be treated, it's treat others the way THEY want to be treated. This also came up again a session on Sunday.

In the evening I have to admit that I didn't do much of anything. I took a swim in the hotel (motel?) pool and caught up on some of that sleep I've been missing in the last few days.

No comments: