When was the last time you thought strategically about your leadership pathway?
Recently, I wrote a two-part article for ALA’s Learning Exchange Newsletter Volume 38, Number 4 & Volume 39, Number 1-3 breaking down steps to map out multi-year leadership journey. The article was based on a 2022 PLA Preconference that I presented as part of the Public Library Association’s Leadership Development Committee called Finding Your Leadership Pathway.
Read the opening section below and then read the full article on the Efficient Librarian website.
What is your leadership pathway?
Developing as a leader is a journey. Much like a real life trip, professional development passes through five steps:
- Personal Assessment
- Selecting a Destination
- Navigating Roadblocks and Detours
- Following a Plan of Action
- Reflecting on the Journey
Before starting any trip, you must know your point of origin. A leadership assessment identifies your current position, skills, and responsibilities. Knowledge of your strengths and weaknesses is essential to consider before setting out. To ensure the assessment sticks, write down the responses on a real piece of paper to make it a physical process.
After orienting yourself on the here and know, there is something deeper to consider: values.
What is a value? The Google dictionary definition states amongst several things that it is: a person’s principles or standards of behavior; one’s judgment of what is important in life.
With that in mind, what are your five top values? Write them down to see if they resonate with your way of life. If they do not, you may be accepting the values of those around you at face value. Reexamine the list and go deeper with another round of listing values. Keep going with more rounds until satisfied that you have found your firm foundation.