Category Archives: HR Practice

Managing When the Future is Unclear

If your library or organization has ever gone through change —and who hasn’t—then you probably know what it feels like to experience ambiguity. Strategic uncertainty can feel like slogging through mud. Leaders avoid investments. Decisions are deferred. Resources are frozen. Fear, uncertainty, and doubt can drive behavior. Employees leave. Morale dives. It can all be overwhelming. How do you continue to lead your staff when it isn’t clear where you’re going or how you’ll get there? How do you handle Read the rest

Dispelling Intergenerational Workplace Cultures in Libraries Today: Who Does It Best?

By Raymond Pun, Jahala Simuel, Eboni M. Henry and Sara Dallas

At the 3rd national Joint Conference of Librarians of Color (JCLC) in New Mexico last September (2018), we presented a session on intergenerational cultures which was intended  to examine the variances of generational cohorts that exist in today’s library workplace. Based on discussions held during the session, it is clear that this topic is important and relevant to all who work in libraries.

We spend more time with Read the rest

Transparency Builds Trust

Many people feel confident moving to a managerial role because of their knowledge and experience. Often, they fail to realize that management requires more. It requires the ability to lead others. How can you demonstrate your leadership qualities? The author of this article suggests that the best approach is simply to be authentic. Being authentic is not just a matter of being your “true” self. It also involves managers being transparent. It means sharing information that team members need. It Read the rest

Helping Employees Find Balance

It’s not news when you hear that technology has resulted in a blurring of the lines between work and home life. People are often sending emails to coworkers at midnight or responding to messages from supervisors at 5:00 a.m. It seems many people have a difficult time unplugging. So where’s the work-life balance? Well, this article asserts that there is no such thing as work-life balance. Some call the new way of working and living a ‘blend’ or an ‘integration’. Read the rest

9 Manager Mistakes That Make Good People Quit

Most of us have heard the saying that people don’t leave jobs; they leave managers. Some managers complain about turnover, about constantly losing their best employees. However, they tend to blame their turnover problems on everything but the real culprit: themselves. According to this article, organizations know how important it is to have motivated, engaged employees, but most fail to hold managers accountable for making it happen. Often, HR turns a blind eye to the poor management style of Read the rest

How to Make Employees Feel Valued

Do your employees feel valued? How do you know? It’s been shown that when employees feel valued, they’re more likely to remain loyal to the library/organization, even if everything is not perfect. Increased job satisfaction can lead to improved performance and reduced turnover. Clearly, employers have an incentive to ensure employees feel appreciated—but how can they do that? This article offers a variety of suggestions that managers/employers can use to make sure employees know they are valued. Most are simple Read the rest

Confronting Poor Performers: 6 Tips for Managers

Although this is a new year, as a manager, you may be dealing with some old issues from last year. Perhaps you put off having a difficult conversation with an employee because you didn’t want to “ruin” the holidays. Or maybe you were hoping that the employee would see the error of his ways and resolve to do better in the new year. Just waiting for certain situations to get better on their own might not be the best way Read the rest

How to Hire for Soft Skills

In the Career Advancement section of last month’s issue of Library Worklife, Dr. Caitlin Williams began a series on soft skills. She stated that “Rather than thinking of soft skills as something that are the opposite of “hard skills”, it’s probably more useful to think of soft skills as a complement to hard skills – because it’s the combination of both types that will help you advance in your career. And it’s the combination of both types that Read the rest

Handling Insubordination? 5 Manager Guidelines to Restore Civility

Have you ever had an employee who refused to do something that you specifically asked them to do? Or even worse, have you ever had an employee who got upset with you, began yelling and cursing at you because you were giving constructive feedback?  Would you consider these situations forms of insubordination? How did you handle them? Or if it has never happened to you, how would you manage these situations? In the heat of the moment, making the correct Read the rest

How to Set Your First-Time Managers Up for Success

For some people, being promoted from an individual contributor on a team to manager can be challenging. In addition, making the transition from friend to boss can often be harder than expected. Many times it is assumed that someone who is great at their job will also be great as a manager. This may not always be true. However, new managers can have a better chance at being successful in their new roles if they are prepared. When managers are Read the rest