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Discover, Share, Implement: Highlights from the Library’s Festival of Work

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As part of a 2023 Library project to embrace and establish a culture of ongoing professional development, Curtin University Library recently hosted a ‘Festival of Work’ for Curtin University Library staff. This exciting professional development event featured a range of presentations, interactive sessions and activities held over four days, all of which were designed to facilitate discovery, sharing and implementation of work design and job crafting strategies.

The festival’s launch event featured an inspiring, thought-provoking session by Professor Julia Richardson, Head of Curtin’s School of Management and Marketing and human resource management, career sustainability and work-life balance researcher, who encouraged staff to reflect on their current life balance. She emphasised the idea that while staff can’t create more time, they can more effectively manage the time they have – in part by considering not only their to-do lists, but their not-to-do lists!

This was followed over the next two days by a range of sessions presented and facilitated by Library staff, including an interactive session on the ways generative artificial intelligence (GenAI) can be used to assist with work, an overview of the task management application Microsoft To Do, a hands-on session on the art of job crafting, and facilitated discussions on the topics of dealing with time traps, managing email and ways to work smarter, rather than harder.

These sessions were complemented by ongoing discussion and sharing of tips on a professional development channel on Microsoft Teams, along with a professional development bingo competition, run in the lead-up to the festival, and with prizes awarded at the conclusion. The activity saw staff challenged to achieve ‘bingo’ on a card full of accessible professional development options – from iPerform training and edX courses to Library activities, events and training. Finally, on the last day of the event, staff were encouraged not only to reflect on what they had learnt and what they would like to learn more about, but to create an action plan and implement ideas from the event.

Feedback on the Festival of Work has been overwhelmingly positive, with staff expressing appreciation for the opportunity to learn from and share with colleagues, and satisfaction with the new strategies they are implementing at work.

Written by Claire Hulcup, Academic Skills Advisor (Numeracy)

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