Asee peer logo

What Do I Do Now: Suggestions For The Frustrated Mid Career Professional

Download Paper |


2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

Re-energizing the Mid-Life Professional

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.1466.1 - 10.1466.9



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors

author page

Bruce Reid

Download Paper |

NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

What Do I Do Now: Suggestions for the Frustrated Mid-Career Professional Bruce Reid The Pennsylvania State University Wilkes-Barre Campus Lehman, Pa. 18627


Librarians, like most professionals, may arrive at a stage in their careers when they start questioning themselves about their job satisfaction and importance. The reasons are many, from not being challenged by their work to abrupt changes in the workplace dictated by management and the economy. At this stage professionals may begin to feel unappreciated by management and not in control of their work environment. In this piece I offer some suggestions that could help mid-career librarians to re-energize themselves and survive in a workplace that is in constant flux. How you react to anxiety of job disconnect will affect the rest of your career life. Should you become more proactive at your job, increasing your responsibility and value to your institution? What does your personality have to do with how you adjust to management changes? Does tenure fit into this equation? Should you even think about changing your job at this stage of your career? What other factors could “spice” up your career? Specific strategies and options for each of these questions will be discussed.

1. Introduction

Some days at work can lead to boredom, stress, and difficulty concentrating, and even thoughts of leaving the profession. After years on the job, librarians may be questioning job satisfaction, and indeed, your importance to the organization. However, maybe there is more to this questioning and frustration then meets the eye. Institutions and organizations today are challenged daily with economic and technological adjustments that can cause stress and anxiety for all employees. Larry Bossidy author of Execution: The Discipline Of Getting Things Done, and a former senior executive at General Electric states, “Whether the economy is strong or weak, competition is fierce, and change comes faster than ever.”1 In today’s competitive atmosphere budgets are being strained and staffs are being required to do more with less and at a quicker pace.2 Having the feeling of being overwhelmed, stressed-out, and not in control of your workplace is becoming common in today’s stressful world.

“Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2005, American Society for Engineering Education”

Reid, B. (2005, June), What Do I Do Now: Suggestions For The Frustrated Mid Career Professional Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--14762

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2005 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015