Diversity Hiring in Football and Libraries

Last week I tweeted about an HBS story unpacking leadership lessons from the recent NFL coach firing spree. In short, the NFL season concludes each year with a host of personnel changes, known by fans as “Black Monday”. The article focused on takeaways from managers on personal development and skill acquisition as strategies to protect … Read more

Accessibility @Skilltype Part 1: Good A11Y is Good UX

At the heart of Skilltype is a spirit of inclusion. We know that information professionals – those who work in libraries, who conduct scholarly research, who manage knowledge systems in our institutions – are vital to the survival and dissemination of truth. We make tools to help these professionals do their job well, and it’s important that our tools invite, include, and serve all those who might benefit from their use. That’s why we are committed to making our software accessible to users of all levels of ability.

The following posts describe the considerations and challenges we faced when developing with accessibility in mind, describes some architectural strategies for building accessible components in React, and then walks through accessibility implementations in two of our components, MenuBar and TagListPicker.

Skilltype @ ALA Midwinter 2019: Taking the Road Less Travelled

In typical Skilltype fashion, our presence at ALA Midwinter 2019 in Seattle was non-traditional. Mainly because as a startup, exhibit hall real estate isn’t the most fiscally responsible investment. But also because brands that launch at ALA in the sea of vendors simply to fade into oblivion. Why spend all of that money to cross your fingers in hope that the right people stop by your “little booth that could”, when in actuality the people who stop by just want to know if you’re raffling off an Apple Watch.

So instead, I saved money, called up some friends, and connected the Skilltype way.

Collaboration and Team Building in Practice

I hear from a lot of folks throughout my different channels about imposter syndrome and lack of training for new managers. This isn’t surprising as most library and information science programs don’t offer managerial courses. Reviewing leadership styles, budgets, and managing personnel is rarely discussed, but incredibly helpful for not only those who are interested in becoming managers, but those who aren’t. Management at any experience level can be trying, but there are things you can do to feel more confident, or at least, understand you’re not alone!

Here are some of the things I thought about and established with my team early on.