5 thoughts on “Man, we (librarians) missed the boat…

  1. DitchTheBun says:

    SO MUCH YES!
    I work in a public library in Australia and there is so much that I constantly push against here. Many of the staff have been here for over 20 years and just are not into change. There is a massive digital divide between staff here. I have literally had a staff member call me because they had a message on their PC saying “press any key to continue” and they couldn’t find the ‘any’ key. Yet they would not go to the beginner word and excel courses I tried to get them to take. A massive amount of the queries we get a technology based and the staff are just not adapting to the new needs of our patrons.
    The management I have where I am are brilliant, they really want change and they work tirelessly to try and get it, but so often they get a few steps forward and then staff or the big wigs just shoot us down. It is so demoralizing. I do love my job though, as I said management is the best I have ever worked with and the reason I have turned down other opportunities over the past 2 years and there are amazing staff that are working towards change. We just have to get to a point where the staff working for change and innovation outnumber the people who are invested in the old ways. Either that or find some middle ground.
    It’s time to shake things up, rock the boat etc. etc. etc. We live in a community that is not affluent and needs much support and I feel like there is so much more we could be doing for them.

    We totally should have jumped on that boat. Imagine how much we could have accomplished! We should totally form the Ministry of Knowledge with a Librarian academy attached :) We need to Patch Adams this thing!

    • jcodner says:

      I love this comment!! I have had so many shared experiences, it’s crazy. One day I will have the time to create an online community of librarians like us and we can organize and try to support one another in making a difference. My system is supportive, which is nice, but there are odd roadblocks that I find very frustrating. And I definitely have issues with some fellow staff members because my department has oddly been labeled the tech department (we’re actually the job and career education department) so everyone sends any tiny little tech question our way. It’s so frustrating! We just have to keep pushing on and fight the good fight. I’m with you!

      • DitchTheBun says:

        That is an odd label. Is it that way because that is just what you have always been called even though the team focus has changed over time?
        Tech wise – one thing I am fighting for at the moment is that management decide on an acceptable level of IT knowledge including PC and other device use and troubleshooting for patrons and then work towards ALL staff reaching that level. This would greatly combat the digital divide I was talking about in my earlier comment.
        I feel as though change here needs to be management driven. They are on board, but we (as all libraries are I think) are understaffed, overworked and budget restraints are huge. Last year I ran training on how to use all of our databases, I went out to each site to provide it. Some people just said they didn’t want to learn it and would pass inquiries on to another team member if they arose – this is why I feel that the word has to come from management. :)
        I have referred a lot of people to the ALA Think Tank Facebook page. Whilst it is often a more casual page it definitely has that feeling of a collective and I have called on it for advice and provided advice on there many times. We have to start somewhere right? :)

      • jcodner says:

        We’ve always been called something job and career related, but in pursuing that goal we have adopted a lot of advanced technology to help our patrons and now the library just assumes we’re the ones to go to for tech stuff. Annoying. I absolutely love your idea of have management set the expectations for staff in terms of their tech knowledge and then make sure staff are meeting that expectation. That would absolutely help combat that divide! Great idea! We also have a lot of staff who just can’t be bothered to learn the resources or technology that is necessary today to help people, so if it was set my management that would absolutely keep the standard up!

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