We’ve all probably got an opinion or reaction when we hear the word “leadership.” Maybe we think, “oh that’s just not for me,” or “I want to be more successful at making change,” or perhaps “I think I’m doing a pretty good job but could always use more pointers” or even “I’m not a manager so this probably doesn’t really apply to me.”

If it’s all or none of the above, you’re in the right place.

Last month, ALA held an inaugural four-day’ Leadership Institute‘ in Illinois.’ Forty participants‘ from all types of libraries and all kinds of positions were invited to participate on an application basis. Six YALSA members attended. We’ll hear from three of them on the YALSAblog. Stay tuned to hear from others through’ YALS,’ as well as other upcoming publications that will share their excitement about the powerful experience.

Annisha Jeffries, Youth Services Manager, with the Cleveland Public Library, OH shares her experience via podcast here. Several highlights of her interview include:

  • Community engagement was an important theme at the Institute. For example, letting teens know that the library is their place and belongs to them.
  • Listening to others was very helpful.
  • Engaging others to buy-in to ideas is possible!
  • Sometimes people are put into a leadership role without setting out to and we need the tools to be able to be effective no matter what our situation is.
  • Teens are the library’s best cheerleaders!
  • As a librarian you have the responsibility to be the leader that you are!

About Kelly Czarnecki

Kelly Czarnecki is a Teen Librarian at ImaginOn with the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library. She is a member of the YALSA blog advisory board.

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