Saturday, 16 July 2011
Thing 5 - cpd23 - Reflective Practice
Thing 5 is upon us - in fact, as I write this, we are almost ready to start on Thing 6! I am feeling a bit happier this week though, as I finally got the chance to blog about some other things that have been going on - although there's still a bit of a backlog, at least it's a bit of progress!
Looking back at the first 4 Things, I am amazed at how my outlook on using many Web 2.0 technologies have changed in such a short time. Looking back at my very first blog post, I was VERY unsure and apprehensive of the concept in its entirety, and had no idea what I really wanted to get out of blogging, other than taking part in cpd23. I cannot deny how surprised I am at how every time I write a post, I feel just a bit more confident and at ease with the concept. I certainly still have a lot to learn, and I have no idea how much any of my posts are being read (with the exception of my two followers of course - thank you Kate and Jo!! :)) ) It is undoubtedly an encouraging feeling when people take the trouble to subscribe to the blog, because it makes me feel that I am not just talking into a great big black hole - and moreover, that what I am saying is actually of some interest!!
So already I have found that this is fantastic way of reflecting on my professional development, not just for the purposes of the cpd23 challenge, but also for my Chartership goals. What also - yet again - surprised me, was how interesting Thing 2 is on an ongoing basis. Checking out other blogs has been an excellent way of gaining an insight into such a variety of information roles - the only problem I have is lack of time in which to do a bit more browsing. But it's really interesting to read about how other participants are finding the programme, and also, it's quite enlightening to see the various styles of writing, and what people are writing about other than cpd23. I definitely feel that my professional awareness - that is, my understanding of the challenges faced by other information professionals in different fields - has increased purely from reading and commenting on other blogs. I really do hope to carry this activity on throughout the whole challenge - and hopefully beyond. Previously I had only followed the the BIALL (law librarian association) blog and that of a fellow legal professional: The Running Librarian. While I still follow these blogs, it's been nice to get a chance to sample such a huge assortment!
Looking back at Thing 3, where I considered my personal brand, I must admit that I still feel a little unsure as to what that actually is! I talked at length about my apprehension over writing this blog as 'me', and explained why I had chosen to write under a pseudonym. I have to admit that I still stand by that decision and I am going to continue writing in this way, as I do feel more comfortable and more free in what I talk about. At the same time, however, when I go along to one of the networking events, I certainly wouldn't go as far as to conceal my identity and deny that I am 'Law Lib Extraordinaire'!! I do realise that I am making it a bit harder to network, compared to everyone who writes very clearly as themselves, but nonetheless, I am sticking with it.
In addition to this, I definitely feel I am establishing my 'brand' with every blog post. I think I mentioned that I wanted to come across as informative, but in a chatty, informal way, and steer away from what I see as the more negative connotations of a typical 'librarian'....
Thing 4 led me into the world of Twitter, RSS feeds and Pushnote. I have to admit this is probably been the 'Thing' that I got the least out of. I was already pretty confident in my use of RSS feeds - I use Google Reader to follow a number of blogs that relate to work, and also to aggregate a number of Google search alerts I have set up to track particular things for fee-earners' current awareness. I did sign up for Twitter, and while I have to say, from just observing other cpd23 participants' tweets, I can see how it could be useful for short bursts of real time information or chat, it just hasn't been feasible for me to take part because the site is blocked at work. My aim was to 'tweet' of an evening, but as you know, I am struggling to find sufficient time to keep this blog updated - and also to be perfectly candid about it, when I am tired after work and I sit down in the evening, I simply don't feel inspired to come up with anything that would be of interest!! Just too tired I think. As you know I decided against Pushnote as I didn't really see any benefit to it in the workplace - not to mention the fact that I wouldn't be allowed to install the program at work anyway. So Thing 4 was a bit of an anti-climax for me - but it's made me look forward to what's next on the agenda even more!
Looking forward to Thing 5 on networking - will hopefully make it along to the London meetup as well....
Image courtesy of: Danilo Rizzuti - http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/view_photog.php?photogid=851