Teaching a New Dog Old Tricks: Supervising Veteran Staff as an Early Career Librarian

Autumn Faulkner


In my second year as a new catalog librarian, my library asked me to assume management of a team of five seasoned copy catalogers, all with decades of experience. Such reporting relationships are increasingly common in libraries. This article discusses challenges and strategies for any early career professional librarian supervising veteran support staff, including emotionally intelligent responses to natural awkwardness or resentment, the development of decisiveness while acknowledging gaps in learning and experience, balancing respect for conventions with pursuit of growth, and making incremental shifts in established culture to prepare for evolutions in job roles and responsibilities.


Support staff; supervisors; emotional intelligence; intergenerational workforce

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5860/llm.v31i1.7206

Published by: Supported by:
American library Association Texas Digital Library