The Education and Training Team has developed a checklist for LIS supervisors to go over with new staff (although we think some not-so-new staff may appreciate this as well). You can find it on the LIS page under “About LIS.” We’ve incorporated input from the AD’s and manager’s group and it will change over time as we get more feedback. Our intention is that the supervisor (perhaps with help from other designated colleagues) will work through this checklist with new hires, explaining and answering questions as they go along. It is not meant to be a self-service learning tool, although new staff can use it to go back and explore topics more in-depth on their own. You’ll notice some entries have a link and some don’t. We only linked to things that weren’t already major links on our public LIS pages so new staff learn to navigate the LIS site as well as become familiar with major “go” shortcuts. We hope our new checklist will help supervisors get new staff off to a great start in LIS!
— Your Education and Training Team: Pij, Brenda, Mack, Andy, Kim (College Advancement)
Yesterday Pij and I represented LIS at the Road Map to Student Services event; part of First Year Orientation, which was held concurrently with the Academic Forum in Kenyon. Half of the incoming First Year class attended the Forum while the other half were given “Passports” and asked to collect stickers from each Student Services station they visited (after which they were rewarded with a “frozen novelty”). Then they switched, and the students who had already attended the Forum attended the Road Map event. Since Pij and I handed out a sticker to every student with whom we spoke during the 2.5 hour event, it was easy to keep track of how many we’d spoken with—over 80! No wonder my voice is a little hoarse today.
What kinds of questions did we field? Pij may have heard other questions, but I think by far the most common questions were relating to connecting to Wireless, installing Microsoft Office, and followed by general questions about how to find/check out books and other materials from the Library. Other questions I heard ranged from “What is LIS”, to “Do you have any job openings?”, to “Can you help me set up email on my smartphone?”. Quite a few students stopped by without specific questions, and Pij’s go-to prompt, “Have you been able to set up your computer okay?” was great at drawing out other concerns and questions. I copied her and used that question quite a few times, and also tried asking about their First Year Seminar courses, which gave me a chance to let them know that a Librarian was assigned to each course, as well as a Peer Mentor and explain about CTLR and how it was related to the Library.
All in all it was a great chance to meet new students, hear how things were going for them, and also learn (from Pij) what to say about some of the most common tech-troubleshooting questions. It also underscored for me how essential it was for Pij and I (as LIS representatives) to be fully up-to-speed on recent and forthcoming changes in technology infrastructure and research tools.
Here’s a rough list of ideas that we developed at a recent meeting to figure out how we can systematically make sure that all of our new LIS staff members are provided with opportunities to learn about LIS and the College.
- Revive the new employee handbook–> Carol thinks she might have a copy of this somewhere.
- Find a moment for each new staff member to review the recently launched strategic planning website
- Invite new staff members to already regularly scheduled staff meetings for the various work areas in order to provide them some insight into what the various work areas do –> we would need a good list of such meetings and when they occur to make this happen
- create a somewhat informal mentoring program that gives new LISers a person to turn to for questions –>we need to identify someone to make this happen
- make sure that all new staff member get to meet everyone in their area on their first day of work, and everyone in LIS within the first month of work (see also increased social activities)
- have a monthly or bi-monthly lunch/coffee to introduce new people and provide a chance for new people to ask questions/learn
- find out more about what happens at the HR orientation to avoid duplication
- share the HR checklist for supervisors of new employees and develop our own checklist (based on this) that supplements that checklist
- consider developing an internal to LIS facebook-like thingy that would allow everyone in LIS to share information about themselves with new staff members (their job duties, their work histories, their photos, and if willing, their personal interests/hobbies)
- increase the number of all-LIS social activities in order to encourage interaction across work groups
- encourage work groups to host open houses for their areas to educate others about what they do
- use all-LIS staff meetings to repeatedly introduce new folks, and vice versa, think of creative ways to allow new folks to meet the rest of us
- provide new hires with a list of 10 people that they really should meet in their first 100 days of employ
Please feel free to make further suggestions using the comments below. It isn’t clear that there will be time or energy or interest to do all of these things. For now we just want to continue to brainstorm ideas.
1. Discuss assessment pilot projects (see https://docs.google.com/Doc?docid=0AYZPHKugPdOiZGNzdDV0aDNfMjVnNnpma2ZmMg&hl=en )
2. Discuss annual planning calendar (see http://sites.middlebury.edu/lis/2010/05/19/annual-planning-calendar/ )
3. Brainstorm ideas for how to orient new staff members to LIS (we’ll post the list of ideas to the blog after the meeting)
On Wed., September 3rd the Main Library will be transformed into an Orientation Information Center for incoming students and their families. Offices from across campus that provide student services will have information tables set up in the Atrium, along with some local organizations. Several local banks will have representatives in the Harman Periodicals Reading Room so students can set up bank accounts.
The Information Center is part of a new approach to orientation. Instead of a welcome center being set up at Kenyon, students will be welcomed at their individual commons offices. All the campus-wide offices that would have been in a central welcome center will be at the Information Center in the Main Lib. LIS is fortunate to be hosting this Info Center because it gives us a chance to also feature our services. For more information contact Joseph Watson.
For an article publicizing orientation see http://www.middlebury.edu/about/pubaff/news_releases/2008/pubaff_633543214388984769.htm
And for the current schedule see http://www.middlebury.edu/NR/rdonlyres/62A86658-2DDF-4421-896B-9F5DB9C4A927/0/orientation_schedule_fall_2008.pdf