DLC Recap – Successful Transition Planning

Last week, the Federal Depository Library Program and Government Publishing Office hosted the Depository Library Council conference in Washington DC. The two and half day conference covers a variety of timely topics, issues, and policies relating to government information and FDLP/GPO. I was fortunate enough to be a presenter at this year’s conference. My talk, Making it Happen Together: Demonstrating Resilience through Successful Transition Planning — A Panel Discussion on Succession Planning and Lessons Learned from New Depository Coordinators, detailed my transition into becoming the Regional Coordinator for Indiana. I presented with two other Regional Coordinators, and shared our stories and recommendations for smooth transitions. Our stories also illustrated that no two positions are the same. Every position and repository is unique, but there are still some tips that will be helpful to your successor.

All three stories emphasized the need to try and leave as many information bread crumbs as possible. By bread crumbs, we mean to leave tips or notes that explain why a decision was made. While our stories were unique, each new coordinator struggled with understanding why a decision was made. For many, the current coordinator plays no role in the selection of his or her successor. Providing contextual information can greatly improve the ease of transition. For new coordinators, it is important to identify individuals who can aid your transition. Typically, long-tenured staff provide a wealth of contextual information, professional organizations and listservs are helpful open forums one can turn to for help or advice, and webinars and conferences provide ample opportunities for new coordinators to learn. Whether entering a new position or leaving, there are measures one can take to expedite a smooth transition.

In addition my group’s presentation, DLC provided ample presentations on various topics and policies relevant to GPO and FDLP. For more information about the 2016 Depository Library Council conference visit https://www.fdlp.gov/2016-depository-library-council-meeting-and-federal-depository-library-conference.