Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Thinking about industry awards

Sitting in an airport gives one time to think (especially since we now have to arrive so early to ensure getting through the various security checks). As I watch the tarmac and consider what I should be reading, my mind turns to the idea of industry awards. I follow a few industries for myself and clients, and notice the awards that are given out. Generally they are people in the industry noting the accomplishments of someone else in the industry. Insiders giving awards to other insiders.

What we need, though, is the recognition of people who are not in our industry. In the information industry, for example, we need people outside of the industry to understand and value what we do. We need businesspeople in aerospace, bioengineering, banking, security, etc., who see us as part of the solution. For indeed, we have skills and knowledge that they can use and profit from.

The struggle is always how to get people in other industries to recognize the value of information professionals. It is a constant struggle.

In the area of digitization, we too need to get people outside of the information industry to recognize the value of librarians and others trained in creating and managing digital assets. They need to understand how we can help them work better, smarter and faster. Again, we struggle in getting them to recognize our skills, but it is something we must keep working at.

Along with that recognition will eventually lead to awards given by other industries to members of the information industry (and not just those denizens at the top). When that happens, we will know that we are having real impact.

No comments: