Monday, November 18, 2019

#NYLA2019 : How to say "no" and how to listen effectively

Session Title: Academic Librarians of Color Understanding the Game

Speakers: Simone Yearwood, CUNY, Queens College and Sandra Michele Echols, Consultant

Descriptions: Emotional Intelligence is the capacity to be aware of, control, and express one's emotions, and to handle interpersonal relationships carefully and empathetically. Emotional Intelligence can be a difficult concept for librarians of color, especially in academia when they are typically the "minority" representative in the department. Learning how to say "no" and safeguarding their status can become a conflict while attempting to obtain tenure. Emotional intelligence can affect your performance at work, your physical and mental health, your relationships and social intelligence. Utilizing Emotional Intelligence skills can enhance your ability to listen, reflect and respond to constructive criticism; make better decisions (time-management), manage relationships and build networks; and stay calm when under pressure (all skills needed to successfully obtain tenure).

Notes: Two areas that interested me in this session where how to say "no" and how to listen effectively, because these are areas in which we all need advice.

How to say “NO” effectively

  1. Be assertive but courteous.
  2. Don’t beat around the bush.
  3. Set boundaries.
  4. Put the question back on the person who is asking.
  5. Don’t be pressured.
  6. Send a reply via email, which documents your decision.  The email "no" will be harder for someone to challenge.
  7. Be selfish.

Effective listening skills

  • Don’t interrupt.
  • Focus on the person and the conversation.  This also means not thinking about your reply, while you are listening.
  • Do not agree just to make the person feel better.
  • Resist the urge to provide  a solution.  In other words, don't jump to a solution. Rather take time to listen to the person and understand what the person needs.

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