On a + note

Disciplined, focused, relentless, and loud! #42: 2012

Posted in on a + note by flickfancy on November 26, 2012

In libraryland, nothing is more important than an organization’s ability to communicate a compelling narrative – to tell a story that connects the library to the customers and convey our vision of the future. From the board members to the front line staff, we all need to tell everyone who will listen where we are going and why we are headed there. We need strong, ongoing narratives about the challenges and triumphs we see every day. We need to be disciplined, focused, relentless, and loud!

Stories are the way we communicate the moral core of who we really area and in what we really believe. And, we in libraryland are rich in stories! For example: I remember the day as a very new librarian I connected the right book with the right kid and all the bells went off! I remember the day I had the amazing experience of re-connecting a runaway daughter with her mom and the day a grieving son walked into the library to gave us a $100,000 cheque for delivering books and hope to his shut-in mom. These are all powerful stories we need to share, because they say who we really are.

Successful libraries like:

►the mighty Toronto Public Library

►the iconic Charlotte Mecklenburg Public Library

of course, the Calgary Public Library

►and the tiny Owen Sound North Grey Union Library

are successful public libraries for many, many reasons. However, they all clearly tell their story. They have disciplined, focused, relentless and loud messages. In an era of instant communication, the library story must be louder, bigger, and told more often than ever before, if we are to be heard above the din of all the other stores being told.

I mention all of this, because as GPL launches its new website, we have developed a portal to collect and share our stories and assigned a young librarian to populate it with our stories. What a great assignment!

Have a great week.

Kitty Pope                                                                                            #42 November 2012


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