October 7, 2015

Susan Lyon | Movers & Shakers 2014 — Marketers



Learning Engagement Manager
Richland Library, Columbia, SC

MLIS, University of South Carolina, 2006; Graduate Performance Diploma with Distinction, Longy School of Music, 2004; MM, Flute Performance, University of Georgia, 2001

TOP 40
Recorded an indie-rock album with local hipsters while a student at the University of Georgia

susanlyon.wordpress.com; @liblyon

Photo by Kickstand Studio

Library Crusader

As learning engagement manager at Richland Library, with 11 branches and 403 employees, Susan Lyon cultivates a culture of experimentation. Starting in April 2011, Lyon led weekly eReady takeovers at local restaurants and cafés, where she and other mobile librarians showed patrons how to access Richland Library’s digital offerings, including ebooks, e-magazines, free music, and language-learning services.

It paid off. In December 2011, the library checked out 11,585 ebooks, compared to 3,062 in December 2010—a 278 percent increase. “It’s about personalizing…making connections…starting conversations…meeting [people] where they are,” explains Lyon.

Lyon’s efforts aren’t only external. She’s introduced a library “Leadership Class” to select and train promising employees and transformed the library’s new employee orientation process, focusing on the library’s promises to the community and building on the talents of new staff. Under the New Employee Experience Transformed (NEXT) initiative, new employees are immersed in the library culture, paired with a buddy, and participate in customer-experience workshops and role-playing.

“Susan is a very special member of our library, and I am constantly awed by her patience, positivity, commitment, and ingenuity,” says Thomas Lide, learning engagement librarian at Richland Library.

Craft Exceptional Digital Experiences for Your Users
Digital UX LJ and ER&L present an exceptional roster of library and user experience (UX) experts for our newest online course, Digital UX Workshop: Crafting Exceptional Digital Experiences for the User-Centered Library. During this 5-week online workshop, you will explore why UX matters, and how to sell user-centered design (UCD) to leadership within your organization. Whether you want to redesign your website, revamp your user interface, create a new discovery tool, implement e-resources, or develop a mobile app—you’ll have a tangible product by the end of the course.
Lead the Change logoLTC register Lead the Change
Library Journal's Lead the Change offers timely resources and tools to stay ahead of the innovations and changes impacting the library profession. Library staff at all levels can participate in hands-on live events, access insightful on-demand webcasts, and enroll in LTC Leadership Academy - Online, a new online learning program that will help staff learn essential skills to advance their careers, solve problems unique to their libraries, and put strategic plans into action. LEARN MORE


  1. Roberta Bibbins says:

    I am so lucky to be able to work with Susan! She is simply the best at what she does.

  2. Amber Conger says:

    Not only is Susan the best at what she does, but everyone loves her too! She is kind, gracious, and humble… truly a joy to work with.