Personal competencies


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Personal Competencies Statement, drafted by the members of the Board for Librarians, led by Hon. Corazon M. Nera, and presented at the second consultative workshop meeting held on 5 September 2013, for the formulation of standards and competencies for the library profession, with the end in view of developing a National Competency-based Standards for Librarians (NCBSL).

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Personal competencies

  1. 1. Personal Competencies Domains: 1. Communication 2. Customer Service 3. Leadership 4. Lifelong Learning and Personal Growth 5. Ethics and Values 6. Interpersonal Skills Introduction: Personal Competencies These competencies are foundational, most of them transferable to any workplace. In most situations in life, the librarians’ effectiveness is enhanced by clear communication, strong relationships, ethical behavior and the flexibility to be a leader, team player and lifelong learner. These competencies are the underpinning of all the other domains of the National Competency-based Standards for Librarians. Librarians and library staff who possess all of these qualities will build a vibrant and relevant library. 1. Communication The success of a Library depends on the librarian’s ability to communicate clearly and effectively. Communication competency leads to fruitful relation- ships with Library colleagues, Management, Clients and Stakeholders. The image of a Library is boosted by effective communication. 1. 1 Communicates effectively using a variety of methods 1.1.1 Communicates clearly and effectively, both verbally and in writing 1.1.2 Relays only timely and accurate information 1.1.3 Presents ideas clearly and concisely, with an appropriate level of enthusiasm 1.1.4 Demonstrates proficient writing skills (correct grammar and sentence construction, accurate spelling, logical thought) 1.1.5 Demonstrates proficient public speaking skills (articulation, convincing delivery, appropriate gestures) 1.1.6 Actively listens, considers, before giving a response 1.1.7 Requests feedback and uses them for self-improvement 1.2 Communicates effectively with a variety of audiences and individuals of diverse backgrounds and culture 1.2.1 Speaks and writes in a professional and clear manner, and appropriate for all audiences
  2. 2. 1.2.2 Gives due consideration of the perceptions, perspectives and communication styles of each audience. 1.2.3 Fosters an environment that encourages two-way communication 1.3 Selects and applies the most appropriate and effective means of communication to meet situational needs 1.3.1 Communicates effectively to obtain consensus, persuade, instruct, and/or motivate 1.3.2 Understands and practices active listening and asking open-ended questions techniques 1.3.3 Selects appropriate communication strategies to resolve conflicts constructively 1.3.4 Possesses appropriate negotiation skills to get beneficial results 2. Customer Service Customer Service should be given top priority in a Library as it is mainly a service enterprise. It is customer satisfaction that uplifts the image of a Library and earns respect for the Librarian. Although Libraries and business enterprises differ in goals and objectives, user expectations and behaviors are universal. 2.1 Manages the Library environment to enhance user experience 2.1.1 Organizes the library collection as well as public areas to make them more conducive to Library use 2.1.2 Organizes physical elements in the library to create a positive and welcoming environment 2.1.3 Addresses the physical and mental barriers that would hinder people from using the Library 2.2 Develops and evaluates standards and practices for the delivery of quality customer service 2.2.1 Creates a Customer Service Plan 2.2.2 Anticipates and maintains awareness of user needs through customer service surveys, usage statistics, feedback logs, and other means 2.2.3 Encourages and analyzes user feedback, evaluates the effectiveness of current services, and adjusts services and practices to meet user demands 2.2.4 Determines the relative needs of users, suppliers and library staff, and strives for balance in supporting them to achieve their goals 2.3 Applies customer service skills to maximize the level of user satisfaction
  3. 3. 2.3.1 Develops a practical and effective marketing plan for the Library 2.3.2 Treats users in a welcoming, professional manner and provides other staff with an example of positive customer service 2.3.3 Acts as a goodwill ambassador for the Library, promotes library values and services in dealing with clients 2.3.4 Demonstrates thorough knowledge of all aspects of the organization that affect users (mission and vision, policies and procedures, collection and services, and system-wide strategies) 2.3.5 Gives due recognition and respect to cultural diversity 2.3.6 Inculcates in staff the values of being service-oriented and rendering effective customer service 2.4 Applies effective techniques to address difficult situations with users 2.4.1 Encourages users to follow library policies and applies good judgment when deviation takes place 2.4.2 Deals with user concerns without bias 2.4.3 Maintains a calm, tactful, and professional manner in difficult situations with users 3. Leadership in order to exercise leadership or management, one need not be a “manager, director, or chief”. There are many small to large opportunities to demonstrate leadership and build these skills through experience. Practicing sound management processes and approaches will score points with co-workers of all levels and positions. 3.1 Aligns efforts with the vision and direction of the organization 3.1.1 Demonstrates faith in the library’s vision, works to achieve it, and inspires others to do the same 3.1.2 Identifies the appropriate opportunities, resources and timing to act in support of the library’s vision and mission 3.1.3 Works to meet or exceed goals by obtaining resources and support, and by eliminating obstacles 3.2 Demonstrates an aptitude for leadership 3.2.1 Actively pursues and accepts leadership roles and demonstrates ability to lead teams effectively 3.2.2 Takes initiative, seeks new opportunities and challenges, and applies creative and innovative thinking
  4. 4. 3.2.3 Maintains a positive attitude and sets an example for others to follow, no matter what position is held in the library 3.2.4 Fosters an environment based on integrity and high ethical standards 3.2.5 Empowers others to take ownership in decision-making and problem- solving 3.2.6 Researches trends in leadership skills and styles and applies new knowledge effectively 3.3 Anticipates and adapts to change and challenges effectively 3.3.1 Maintains the flexibility to accept change and to adapt with curiosity and enthusiasm 3.3.2 Maintains a positive attitude in the face of challenges and unanticipated changes 3.3.3 Anticipates future trends and recommends changes in priority or direction in alignment with organizational goals 3.3.4 Explores and adopts new technologies for their potential to deliver new ideas, products and services 3.3.5 Recommends and takes reasonable risks to test implementations of change 4. Lifelong Learning and Personal Growth No matter what position a librarian occupies or what employment future or career path he/she looks forward to, an embrace of lifelong learning and continuous improvement will enrich a librarian’s professional life and personal growth. 4.1 Manages the development of his/her own career and ongoing improvement of skills and knowledge 4.1.1 Understands the importance of lifelong learning for all levels of library work and actively pursues personal and professional growth through continuing education 4.1.2 Formulates personal career goals, identifies learning needs and creates a learning plan to achieve them 4.1.3 Recognizes the value of professional networking and actively participates in professional associations 4.1.4 Understands and uses resources and strategies for keeping up with new ideas and technologies 4.1.5 Seeks opportunities to apply new knowledge and to share best practices, research and experiences with colleagues 4.2 Pursues a commitment to personal growth and lifelong learning
  5. 5. 4.2.1 Practices ongoing self improvement in response to feedback 4.2.2 Hones critical thinking skills 4.2.3 Supports self and others in pursuit of a balanced lifestyle 4.2.4 Seeks exposure to new ideas, both within and beyond the library field, and stretches beyond his/her comfort zone 4.2.5 Pursues learning in multiple formats (including online) and practices self-directed learning 5. Ethics and Values The library plays a crucial role in society and the community. Library ethics and values have been carefully formulated in the Librarian’s Code of Ethics to fulfill our professional commitments to the community and to guide the practice of librarianship in the Philippines. 5.1 Understands and acts in accordance with the basic values and ethics of library services 5.1.1 Understands the history of libraries and their role in society, both in general and in the particular community 5.1.2 Understands and adheres to the mission, values and vision of the library organization 5.1.3 Provides equitable services to all users 5.1.4 Recognizes, respects and addresses the diverse nature of the library’s users and community 5.2 Demonstrates familiarity with the Intellectual Property Rights and other related laws and the Code of Ethics for Filipino Librarian, and articulates the relevance to library service 5.2.1 Understands privacy issues and protects user confidentiality 5.2.2 Understands and promotes the Philippine Copyright Law and respects copyright laws of other countries 5.2.3 Understands and promotes intellectual freedom and freedom of information 5.2.4 Adheres to the Librarian’s Code of Ethics, or the Code of Technical Standards for Librarians, and the implementing rules as provided in the Law on Philippine Librarianship (RA 9246) 6. Interpersonal Skills Interpersonal skills are the life skills that we use every day to communicate and interact with other people, both individually and in groups. People with interpersonal skills work well in a team and are able to interact effectively with colleagues, customers and senior management
  6. 6. 6.1 Develops and maintains effective relationships with others to achieve common goals 6.1.1 Treats everyone with honesty, respect and fairness to build an environment of trust 6.1.2 Contributes to a collaborative, committed and collegial work environment 6.1.3 Pursues an understanding and embraces individual and organizational diversity 6.1.4 Acknowledges own strengths and contributions, and recognizes the complementary strengths and contributions of others 6.1.5 Shares knowledge gained through professional discussions, conferences, formal courses and informal channels with colleagues 6.1.6 Gives and receives constructive feedback from coworkers, supervisors and users 6.2 Works effectively in teams with strong team-building skills and attitudes 6.2.1 Contributes constructively to the achievement of the team’s goals and objectives 6.2.2 Contributes to a problem-solving environment and works toward mutually acceptable solutions, regardless of position or level 6.2.3 Participates actively in information-gathering and decision-making in order to promote the best interests of the team 6.2.4 Manages own and others’ time effectively to deliver work on time 6.2.5 Finds opportunities to help others to develop new ideas and achieve their full potential 6.2.6 Gives or receives coaching or mentoring from team members as appropriate 6.3 Applies effective strategies to manage organizational politics, conflict and difficult co-worker behaviors 6.3.1 Understands that organizations are inherently political (including libraries) and develops strategies to become an effective player 6.3.2 Understands a variety of difficult behavior patterns and develops responses appropriate to each 6.3.3 Routinely examines own behavior, accepts accountability for own actions and adjusts appropriately 6.3.4 Understands and applies strategies for conflict resolution