Wherever I work, sooner or later it dawns on me that I’m not the new person, and indeed am looked on to be teaching the tricks of the trade to new people. Even more interesting to me are the situations where people that I have trained and coached are then in a position to be showing the ropes to new people.
I’ve had a lot of that recently at the library on both fronts. I have new starters that I’ve been setting to shadow staff to who I only recently taught the basics and helped past anxieties of dealing with the unexpected; and I have new deputies to who I am unveiling some of the “dark arts” of rotas, branch admin, and how to handle certain personalities among staff and customers.
I think I’ve been more gratified by watching how well people I’ve mentored be able to instruct and teach others in turn. It has felt like another tick box in the quiet assessment of how they’re doing and boost of the confidence I have in the people I manage.
It’s a simple pleasure, but also one that chimes with my own belief that people are generally happier when they understand their jobs and feel confidence in what they are asked to do, as they realise the breadth of their own skills and experience.
It’s almost as if I know what I’m doing..!