Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Polaris and the Dirt Dawgs

I read a lot and I'm always looking for relationships among the things I'm reading. I love it when different sources, while talking about different subjects, nevertheless address a common theme. This "harmonic convergence" happened again this week.

I've been reading Jerry Remy's Watching Baseball. Remy's a former second baseman for the Red Sox who now calls the games from the press box for the New England Sports Network. In his book, he talks about the "Dirt Dawgs;" the guys who just like to play. "I like to watch guys give the same effort when they're down by ten runs and when they're ahead by ten runs." he writes. "I can't stand guys who mail it in. The only thing you can control in the game is your effort."

Then this comment appeared on John Blyberg's blog.
"Some people also just don’t like to step out of their comfort zone. They don’t want to absorb new things. I was on a top technology trends panel at OLA last January when someone asked, “what if we don’t want to learn about all these new technologies?” (paraphrase). I don’t think I was in the mood for hand-holding because my answer was, “it’s your job.” Really. I don’t believe libraries are life support systems for staff. We need to work for our bread. That means that we have so stop bunting and try to knock it out of the park every single time. That takes passion, and too many people in every industry, including libraries, lack it."

Then, last Sunday our local newspaper ran a feature called "Top Ten Ways to be Happy at Work." They took it right from this web site:
Top Ten Ways to be Happy at Work.

Number 3 on the list is :Take Charge of Your Own Professional and Personal Development." It reads, "You are the person with the most to gain from continuing to develop professionally. Take charge of your own growth...You have the most to gain from growing - and the most to lose, if you stand still."

How do these three items relate to each other? Our county libraries will be moving to a new catalog system from Polaris in the fall. It'll be a wonderful improvement, but it'll involve learning a lot of new processes. Training has already begun and there's much more to come. But no amount of training will cover every situation that will come up. There will be times when you'll feel like you're down 10 runs. Be imaginative and resourceful. Try something! As Remy would say, "Make an effort!"


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