Hyperlinked Job Description – “You have Curiosity…focused energy…”

Hey all –  this job was posted at Denver Public Library in early 2015. The description is gone but it was very interesting.

Here’s a BIG snippet I saved (bolding is mine):

What You’ll Do: Work downtown at the Central Library as a key member of a team that fosters a culture of innovation and inquiry with a specific role to support activities related to the Library’s customer-focused strategic initiatives. Assist executive team with development of a strategic initiative lifecycle. In collaboration with initiative team leaders, guide staff teams with an inspirational vision that encourages creativity, innovation and best practices. Coordinate the efforts of multiple teams from idea generation, prototyping, experimentation, evaluation through implementation. Help develop practices to encourage and support innovation among initiative teams but also throughout the organization. Facilitate design thinking and other workshops, bringing staff together to spark creative synergies and learn from each other. Challenge teams to think critically. Serve as a bridge between teams and help foster collaboration across the system. Help teams with project management, manage timelines, track and analyze resources and capacity. Assist teams to obtain resources, develop and evaluate experiments, negotiate conflicts, measure and replicate success, learn from failures, analyze and communicate results, and ultimately operationalize services or resources. Develop and sustain strong relationships with staff from all library divisions.

You Have: Curiosity. Focused energy. A sincere desire to improve our community. Enthusiasm for risk taking and learning from failure. Passion for developing relationships. Interest in developing a new role and program. Demonstrated skill in leading and guiding individuals and teams and creating a culture of trust and collaboration. Demonstrated skill in creative problem solving, adaptive thinking and making connections. Ability to facilitate small and large groups. Understanding of or demonstrated interest in and willingness to learn design thinking, prototyping and innovation principles and practices. Demonstrated interest in business and cultural trends. Experience with successful evaluation, measurement and accountability practices. Experience with project implementation. Experience with coordinating and managing projects and resources. Ability to organize, prioritize, and manage multiple projects simultaneously. Ability to bring a positive energy, excellent interpersonal skills, cultural sensitivity and a sense of humor to the workplace. Ability to communicate effectively with all organizational levels, both verbally and in writing. Ability to multi-task, prioritize and work independently. Ability to pass a background check after the offer to hire has been made.

There’s so much here that reminds me of the conversations we’ve had about skills, approaches to organizational change, and what librarianship means in 2020.


8 thoughts on “Hyperlinked Job Description – “You have Curiosity…focused energy…”

  1. Cathryne Ramirez

    @michael I love the inclusion of “learning from failure.” In a job, I think it’s reassuring to know that perfection isn’t an expectation, especially when that job expects risk taking. It’s more of an encouragement to try out your ideas and if it doesn’t work out, try out the next one. It really reminds me of the Brian Matthews, “Think Like a Startup” paper. Many ideas should be tried, a plan may not always work out (and you shouldn’t get stuck on that plan), and ideas should be tried as they come (and changed as needed).

  2. Jodi

    @michael, Like @cathryner, I too was struck by “learning from failure.” It is refreshing to see that in a job posting. I was also struck by the repetition of words like team, ability, group, innovation, and collaboration. It made me think that the posting was written by one of your former students! And that it would be a neat place to work.

  3. Skye Appleby

    I loved the inclusion of ability to bring “sense of humor to the workplace.” How much more fun does that make coming to work everyday when you can joke around a little? I’ve never seen that in a job advertisement before. Very humanistic job posting and definitely one I would want to apply for.

  4. Sarah Mettler

    I just love this job posting! I think one of the things I struggle with most is really defining what ‘librarianship’ is because there are so many different workplaces, different communities, and different skills. Being a librarian is being up for trying anything anytime, even things that haven’t been invented yet. 🙂

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