I haven’t forgotten about Ask Me Anything, all evidence to the contrary. Today, in a catch-all sort of way, I’m going to answer 3 questions from the original AMA post I wrote back in May.
Sarah asked: will you please tell us more about what you do at your job?
I am a Library Director in a small town in Southeastern MA. I’ve had this job for almost exactly 22 years, I started on 9/19/1999. Most of what I do is management . . . submitting payroll, processing bills, staff scheduling and keeping the Board of Library Trustees informed about things at the library. I attend Department Head meetings and network meetings (I’m the President of our network this year) and I hold staff meetings. I schedule passport application appointments, I deal with patrons who have problems, I handle performance reviews and I catalog the magazines. I print out and pull the holds list (books that people have requested, some that stay at our library but most that go out in delivery) every morning, I sometimes work at the circulation desk and create flyers and newsletters (not as often as I should) and emails to entice people to attend library events. I love my job because I get to work in a beautiful place with really great people and I’m surrounded by stories.
Bonny asked: what do you enjoy (and not enjoy) about being a selectman:
I’ve served on the Board of Selectman in my town since April, 2019. I enjoy almost all aspects of this role, from attending meetings to contract negotiations, to problem solving with my colleagues on the board. I like working with our Department Heads and helping them be successful, not just for themselves but for the town overall. I like being . . . in the know and making decisions on behalf of the people who trusted me by putting me in this position. I think the only thing I don’t like is that sometimes I can’t tell people why we did something because it’s related to a personnel matter or a lawsuit or executive session. It can be really frustrating to see people on social media speculating (or blaming) us for something and I just want to say, listen! this is why! But out attorneys won’t let me, hahaha!
Kym asked: what do you consider to be your main superpower?
I’m good in a crisis. Like, really good. I don’t fall apart, I am able to assess what needs to be done and either do it or assign it to someone else, and I generally know the right thing to say. Case in point, when Dale got hit by a car last year, I was calm and held it together. Inside I was terrified and shaken to the core but on the outside I was calm, thanking everyone for what they were doing, calming down my kids and assuring them that everything would be fine, and asking questions and writing down the answers. I might fall apart after things settle down but in the moment . . . I’m the one you want. The sad truth is that this stems from childhood trauma and chaos but it has served me well as an adult.
And those are my answers for this week – I hope you learned something new about me.
If you wrote a post for today, please include your link below. Thanks, as ever, for hanging with me on Thursdays.
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Three rather interesting things, too. I’d love to visit your library one day. The little bits we’ve seen suggest it’s a pretty place.
Three very positive things/attributes in your life, Carole! It’s great that childhood trauma can result is positive attributes. I have had the same experience with learning how to stay calm in a crisis. It’s a great talent to have!
Well there goes my fantasy of thinking you got to sit around and read all day! (Just kidding!) Thanks for this bit of insight into how you spend your days.
Love it! Thanks for sharing these glimpses into your days. (And I know jsut who to call on for crisis management assistance!) XO
I pictured you doing mostly administrative things at the library, but I’m glad you get to work the circ. desk sometimes. It sounds like you are really cut out to be a selectman. I’ve attended some of our Freeholder meetings but found them incredibly boring and full of people who liked to hear themselves talk. And your superpower really is a Super Power! I’m sorry for the ways that you developed this, but I wish I had those skills.
Mary K. in Rockport says
Your super power is a great one to have! Both your job as a librarian and your service as a selectman sound very interesting and worthwhile. Thanks for sharing!
Margene Smith says
Number three is why you’re good at your job and as Selectman. I feel you’re good at (in) everything you do!
This is great! And as I’ve said before…EB is lucky to have you!
Of all those things you listed re: what you do as library director, which of those tasks/responsibilities do you enjoy the most? Because you do A LOT of things! And it’s a wide variety!
Playing catchup and trying not to leave too many comments, but couldn’t NOT comment here. I love how open you are about what you do and what you love! …are you still working with the seniors? and when I read that third question, I immediately thought “supapowa” (have you read A Tale for the Time Being?) and thought about how strong you were in the face of Dale’s injury last summer.