What makes a great library worker? #6: 2013
Library workers – from the boss to the Sunday staff – need to:
► Be passionate about libraries. They should sing our praises and tell our story again and again and again.
► Be inquisitive. They are driven by lifelong learning and ready to research any question,
to embrace new technologies, and to enjoy the adventure again and again.
► Remain fleet and flexible. Priorities in the library of 2013 change at the drop of a hat, and staff members need to adjust quickly to our changing world.
► Have patience. If you have worked with a board or on a circulation desk, you know what I mean.
► Be team players. If there is one thing library workers around the world do really well, it’s working together to accomplish great things. We are great team players.
► Want to make a difference in the lives of our customers. We can’t make folks want to work with the public; either they like to or they don’t. Libraries need to consciously hire employees who really like to work with the public.
► Believe in the intrinsic good of people.
► Be positive, smile, and say “thank you” 100 times a day!
I add that great librarians:
► have the courage to stand up and lead.
► possess great communication skills…verbal and digital.
► innovate and seek out new and better ways of doing things.
► utilize great marketing skills to keep libraries front-of-mind and relevant.
► embrace the necessity of change to assure that libraries survive.
And, above all, great library workers need to have an indelible sense of humor. If you do not see the fun and inspiration in library work, this may not be the best career for you.
To all those library workers who are passionate, inquisitive, patient, positive, and know how to laugh, I applaud you and your commitment to making a difference. It is because of you that libraries are great.
Kitty Pope #6 February 2013