Purpose To discuss what the main transferable skills of senior library managers are when they move to a different work environment, such as from the academic to the business sector, or from a home country to another, possibly working in another language. The difference between change of content and change of environment is discussed. The discussion is placed in the author’s experience of these sorts of change.
Approach The various changes in the author’s career are described and the differences between the sorts of change analysed. The key transferable skills in moving into new environments are suggested in conclusion.
Findings Mobility into environments with a significantly different structures and culture and a foreign working language is on the increase. Greater mobility, globalization and integration in Europe are likely to support this trend. Content and environment are two different aspects of this mobility. The key attributes that a senior manager brings to the new position are management experience, domain knowledge and a different perspective.