Launching Large-Scale Library Initiatives: Innovation and Collaboration By Valerie Horton With years of library experience under her belt, Horton knows that project management involves various stages of planning and a careful balance of preparation, collaboration, and management of resources. In this title, Horton presents lessons and techniques from project management across various industries and adapts … Continue reading Project Management Basics
From a national perspective, we now understand that collections are hugely redundant and large portions go unused. Collections were built on a just-in-case basis over the course of centuries; when items needed to be close at hand and out-of-print titles were difficult and expensive to acquire, this was the best strategy to ensure access. This … Continue reading Rightsizing Your Collection
Whether or not a library wants a specific element on its site may be irrelevant; the web design and user experience fields are now based on the science of usability, not subjective judgments. Back in the early days of the web, a fair amount of design work happened in a vacuum, lacking real guidelines and … Continue reading Taming the Wild Web
1: Create a workflow When a team wants to submit a grant proposal, it should first ask this question: Do we know the review and approval steps and authorities within our organization who are required to sign off on the proposal prior to submission? If the answer is no, then ascertaining this information will be … Continue reading Creating Fundable Grant Proposals
In general, there are four approaches that libraries can take in relation to patron privacy. As library leaders consider implementing new tools for improving user outreach, they need to consider which model best suits their mission and strategic initiatives: Strict privacy. At one end of the spectrum, the library configures its integrated library system (ILS) … Continue reading A Model for Privacy?
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
Invisible labor is a concept from feminist scholarship that aims to bring attention to underpaid, unrecognized, and undervalued work, often performed by women. Household work is an example, but the term also applies to some intellectual work, like that performed in libraries. When a job is done well—a program goes off without a hitch, for … Continue reading Work Made Visible
Most libraries use one or more library engagement platforms—such as newsletters, mobile apps, or reservation systems—for communications like notifying customers about upcoming events or inviting them to browse materials and check something out. These interactions are touchpoints where the library and customer connect, not unlike a physical reference or circulation desk. Let’s consider how libraries … Continue reading Ways to Connect
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
Although stereotypes about cold, harsh, robotic librarians persist, those of us who work with the public must display emotional intelligence for our patrons’ sakes—and our own. Emotional labor Vicarious traumatization (VT) occurs when we work with patrons whose traumatic stories transfer onto us. We may not realize that transference has happened. Subtly and gradually, it … Continue reading The Weight We Carry
I was reminded of the words of the late US Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm: “If they don’t give you a seat at the table, bring a folding chair.” When I was eventually elected to the VLA vice presidency, I established the VLA Librarians of Color (LOC) Forum with that goal in mind—to provide more seats at … Continue reading More Seats at the Table
Castro is one of many library leaders who found themselves managing their teams remotely because of the pandemic, developing new approaches to meet unprecedented challenges and continue providing vital services to the community. The insights these managers developed are valuable for those still perfecting their remote management style—or planning for a work-from-home future. Supportive management … Continue reading Can You Hear Me Now?