Lisa Norton …In Six

My interview with success story Lisa

Naomi: How did you find your current job?
Lisa: I actually found my current job through pure happenstance. When I kicked off my job hunting journey, I decided I would solely focus on landing my dream job as a reference librarian at a public library. However, as the months went by, the reality of today’s economy really hit me…I might not find that “dream” opportunity. And so I decided that I needed to take a different approach. I began to focus my search on any job in any industry that combined my love of research, information, and data. Then I began to bombard any and every venue with my resume from Linkedin to Monster to USAJobs to individual job postings. It was at this time a recruiting company that had seen my resume on the web approached me with an opportunity to be a research analyst at a market research firm. While I was hesitant at first, the job description piqued my interest. It wasn’t my “dream job” but it would offer me plenty of opportunities to do many of the things I love–secondary research, client interaction, information management, and data analysis. So I took the plunge and began the application/interview process, and the rest is history.

Naomi: Favorite library you have been to?
Lisa: While there are many many more I would love to visit (see here for a taste of a few on my list: http://www.miragebookmark.ch/most-interesting-libraries.htm) the best so far has been the Fine Arts Library at University of Pennsylvania (my ungrad alma mater).

Naomi: Favorite book?
Lisa: Wow, this is the hardest question you can ask a trained librarian. Should I pick among the classics, contemporary, YA, genre-specific, oy vey! Well, I guess I will go with my all-time favorite classic Pride and Prejudice by the incomparable Jane Austen . Mr. Darcy and Lizzy will always own my heart.

Naomi: Favorite thing about libraries/ library technology?
Lisa: I think my favorite thing about the library field is how it is always changing. Library and information professionals are always coming up with new and innovative ways to create, access, and share knowledge. While many in the general public may not realize this, librarians are information professionals that will always be at the core of maintaining a civilized and enlightened society.

Naomi: Any websites or feeds or blogs we should be following?
Lisa: Well, of course I will plug my own blog http://bookwrm2006.blogspot.com/ for some fun updates on my book reviews, crocheting, and life. But I also recommend following LIS News for some general headlines in the Library and Information technology world as well as seeing if your local library has a WOWbrary–an RSS feed of all their new acquisitions.

Naomi: Best piece of job hunting advice?
Lisa: I think the best piece of job hunting advice I have learned and can give is to not get discouraged. In today’s economy jobs are few and far between. It might take you longer than you expected to land a job, but that doesn’t mean you are an undesirable–it’s just that you are competing with hundreds and hundreds of other people in the same boat as you. With that in mind, don’t limit yourself in your job search. Stop trying to find that picture perfect dream job and look for opportunities outside of the box–don’t ignore the opportunities that will capitalize on all of your skills as an information professional just because it doesn’t come with that “perfect” job title.

Happy hunting!

Hello! I’m Lisa, a recent MLS graduate from the University of Maryland. I ventured into the magical world of librarianship after a 4-year stint in the professional working world—primarily in the health and behavioral intervention research sector. My love of information, data, research and “the-need-to-always-find-the-RIGHT-answer” convinced me to look into MLS programs. After a year and a half, I completed the University of Maryland’s iSchool program and returned to my old stomping grounds in the Philadelphia area in order to pursue career opportunities in the information world. While my ultimate dream is to work reference in a public library setting, I am excited but my new, challenging, non-library opportunity to play with information in the market research arena. My love of books will continue to live on through my blog: http://bookwrm2006.blogspot.com/

Naomi House

Naomi House, MLIS, is the founder and publisher of the popular webzine and jobs list INALJ.com (formerly I Need a Library Job) and former CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) of T160K.org, a crowdfunding platform focused on African patrimony, heritage and cultural projects. INALJ was founded in October 2010 with the assistance of her fellow Rutgers classmate, Elizabeth Leonard. Its 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. INALJ has had over 20.5 Million page hits and helped many, many thousands of librarians 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 one month. Naomi believes that well-sourced quantity is quality in this narrow job market and INALJ reflects this with many new jobs published daily. She has also written for the 2011, 2012 and 2013 LexisNexis Government Info Pro and many other publications in the past decade. She presents whenever she can, including serving on three panels at the American Library Association's Annual Conference in Las Vegas; as breakout presenter at OCLC EMEA in Cape Town, South Africa; as a keynote speaker at the Virginia Library Association annual meeting; at the National Press Club in Washington DC; McGill University in Montreal, Canada; the University of the Emirates, Dubai, MLIS program and the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Naomi was a Reference, Marketing and Acquisitions Librarian for a contractor at a federal library outside Washington, DC, and has been living and working in Budapest, Hungary and Western New York State. She spent years running her husband’s moving labor website, fixed and sold old houses and assisted her husband cooking delicious Pakistani food. She is preparing to re-enter the workforce and is job hunting. Her husband is now the co-editor of INALJ, a true support!  She has heard of spare time but hasn’t encountered it lately. She pronounces INALJ as eye-na-elle-jay. 

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