On Being Versatile

by Emily Guier, Head Editor, INALJ Wyoming

On Being Versatile

As information professionals, we often engage in conversations justifying our existence or questioning if we have a future in a world with Google. On both sides of the argument, we discuss our versatility. After all, information is everywhere.

Being versatile professionals, there are exciting new tools at our disposal. Freelancing is easier than ever with various websites like elance.com or guru.com. At INALJ, we use a variety of different keywords to find leads–why not extend our skills as information professionals to freelancing? For newly minted librarians fresh out of library school, this may be a valuable way to gain experience and beef up a résumé. For more seasoned professionals, freelance work allows flexibility and a means to earn some extra money. Granted, this avenue requires a broader perspective of what we’re trained for; not many people are looking for someone to catalog their personal libraries.

I was reading an article (http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2013/01/14/130114fa_fact_marx) recently about Task Rabbit (www.taskrabbit.com), a site that connects people who need a service with those who can provide it. I am continually amazed at how technology connects people in the pursuit of making life easier. Perhaps this, and other similar sites, is an opportunity for job seekers in a tough economy.

INALJ readers, have any of you freelanced as an information professional? Are there any resources you would suggest?  Join the discussion on LinkedIn:  http://www.linkedin.com/groupItem?view=&gid=4112382&type=member&item=215946148




Naomi House

Naomi House, MLIS, is the founder and publisher of the popular LIS jobs resource INALJ.com (formerly I Need a Library Job). Founded in October 2010 with the assistance of her fellow Rutgers classmate, Elizabeth Leonard, INALJ’s social media presence has grown to include Facebook (retired in 2016), Twitter and a LinkedIn group, in addition to the interviews, articles and jobs found on INALJ.com. INALJ has had over 20 Million page views and helped thousands of librarians and LIS folk find employment! Through grassroots marketing, word of mouth and a real focus on exploring unconventional resources for job leads, INALJ grew from a subscription base of 20 friends to a website with over 500,000 visits in a month. Naomi believes that well-sourced quantity is quality in this narrow job market and INALJ reflects this many new jobs published daily. She was a 2013 Library Journal Mover & Shaker and has served on the University of Maryland iSchool Board from 2014-2017. Naomi was a Reference, Marketing and Acquisitions Librarian for a contractor at a federal library outside Washington, DC, and now lives part time in Western NY and Budapest, Hungary. She has heard of spare time but hasn’t encountered it lately. She pronounces INALJ as eye-na-elle-jay.