Area Planning’s GIS staff members and their counterparts with the Louisville-Jefferson County Information Consortium (LOJIC) have begun an informal job shadowing program. The idea to pursue the initiative resulted from a casual conversation between two professionals and included two goals: learning from colleagues; and, building professional relationships.
“I was at LOJIC recently and commented to its director, ‘Wouldn’t it be great if my staff could meet with your people individually to discuss what they’re doing and how they go about it?’” said Trisha Brush, GISP, NKAPC’s Deputy Director for GIS Administration.
LOJIC’s director and staff were quick to embrace the idea. Brush and her team spent a day last month shadowing their counterparts in Louisville. The LOJIC staff will visit NKAPC later this month.
“GIS responsibilities are largely unique from position to position,” said Brush. “This makes it difficult to discuss job issues with coworkers because they’re responsible for different aspects of the process. Shadowing someone who does essentially the same thing that you do can really help in a number of ways.”
Brush said that in addition to increasing her team’s knowledge base, the shadowing experiences boost morale, allowing employees to relate to someone whose job responsibilities are similar to their own. She believes the LOJIC team serves as a model for NKAPC and vice versa.
“We’re pleased to be able to partner with LOJIC because our systems are so similar,” she said. “It’s been great talking technology with them and comparing plans for expanding our systems.”
“Any way we can help each other and learn from the experience will benefit everyone involved,” said Brush. “It’s definitely a ‘two heads are better than one’ situation.”
“Our trip to LOJIC was very successful; we’re really looking forward to hosting their staff.”