Headshot of Brandy Sanchez

Culture of Care

May 1, 2024

According to the 2022 Urban Library Trauma Study from Urban Librarians Unite, nearly 70% of respondents shared that they had experienced violent or aggressive behavior from patrons, while 22% indicated that they experienced similar behavior from coworkers. When working with patrons, many libraries employ trauma-informed care, a practice popular in health care and social work. It … Continue reading Culture of Care

Shola Richards speaks at the opening session for the 2024 Public Library Association conference on April 3 in Columbus, Ohio.

How We Work

April 4, 2024

“It is an idea that there’s no place where I end and you begin,” explained Shola Richards, opening keynote speaker of the 2024 Public Library Association (PLA) conference in Columbus, Ohio, on April 3. Richards—author of professional development books Go Together: How the Concept of Ubuntu Will Change How We Work, Live, and Lead (Sterling … Continue reading How We Work

(From left) Cindy Hohl, Tamika Barnes, and Sonia Alcántara-Antoine speak with ALA Interim Executive Director during the closing session of the LibLearnX Conference January 22 in Baltimore.

Lead from Wherever You Are

January 22, 2024

Anyone can lead from wherever they are, she says, by having influence and the ability to bring colleagues together. “Management is making sure people do things the right way,” said Alcántara-Antoine, CEO of Baltimore County (Md.) Public Library. “Leadership is making sure they’re doing the right things.” Alcántara-Antoine was one of three renowned figures in … Continue reading Lead from Wherever You Are

The Accidental Leader

January 22, 2024

Meslener, head of the social sciences team and Mason Square Library at George Mason University in Arlington, Virginia, said it came when she was in a new leadership role and was told to work on the budget—without any training. “‘This is what we did last year,’” she recalled administrators saying. “‘Here you go, have fun.’” … Continue reading The Accidental Leader

Headshots of Nia Lam and Michelle McKinney

Fighting Posttenure Fatigue

January 2, 2024

However, in the days, months, and years afterward, tenured academic librarians may start to feel a lack of motivation, support, and career guidance. Mentoring programs customarily focus on early-career librarians, and many people begin to wonder, “What next?” To answer that question, we’ve highlighted strategies for dealing with posttenure burnout. Be intentional about your time. … Continue reading Fighting Posttenure Fatigue

Author Linda Sue Park (left) and We Need Diverse Books CEO Ellen Oh speak at the ALSC President's Program at the American Library Association's 2023 Annual Conference and Exhibition in Chicago on June 26.

Leading the Way

June 28, 2023

These were the questions that guided the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) President’s Program at the American Library Association’s 2023 Annual Conference and Exhibition in Chicago on June 26. ASLC President Amy Koester, learning experiences manager at Skokie (Ill.) Public Library, moderated “Leading with Your Hands and Your Heart: A Conversation about Leading … Continue reading Leading the Way

Librarian's Library by Allison Escoto

Leadership at Any Level

May 1, 2023

Inspired Thinking: Big Ideas to Enrich Yourself and Your Community By Dorothy Stoltz, with Morgan Miller, Lisa Picker, Joseph Thompson, and Carrie Willson For libraries to remain relevant, the concept of inspired thinking is not only valuable but essential. Beginning with a hat tip to big thinkers like Plato and Shakespeare, this reflective volume outlines … Continue reading Leadership at Any Level

Librarian's Library by Araceli Mendez Hintermeister

Harbingers of Harmony

March 1, 2022

Library Next: Seven Action Steps for Reinvention By Catherine Murray-Rust The pandemic has presented libraries with unusual challenges, creating an atmosphere in which change comes quickly and often. Library Next offers takeaways and activities you can adapt to your work style and organizational culture while navigating new developments in the profession. A self-proclaimed library disrupter, … Continue reading Harbingers of Harmony

Photo of On My Mind author Carolyn Schubert

Building a Better Tomorrow

November 1, 2021

Personally, I’ve observed an increase in conversations among librarians on social media about leaving the profession, which seems in line with broader trends. More people are considering changing jobs—as many as 66% of US workers, according to a study by Personal Capital and Harris Poll published in August. Others are retiring altogether; in May, The … Continue reading Building a Better Tomorrow

ACRL 2021 Virtual Conference Invited Speaker Kaetrena Davis Kendrick

ACRL Day Two: Getting to Welcome

April 15, 2021

She began her talk by laying out the challenges facing the field—such as rising tuition costs, student retention, competition, and the pandemic—and their corresponding opportunities, including attracting nontraditional students, expanding degree programs, tapping alumni resources for networking, and rethinking what the campus experience could mean to students after the pandemic. Kendrick spelled out her theory … Continue reading ACRL Day Two: Getting to Welcome

The Activist Life of E. J. Josey

November 2, 2020

Renate L. Chancellor, associate professor in the Department of Library and Information Science at Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., and author of E. J. Josey: Transformational Leader of the Modern Library Profession (Rowman and Littlefield, 2020), is a leading Josey scholar. American Libraries spoke with her about his life, activism, and impact on … Continue reading The Activist Life of E. J. Josey