December 7, 2016

Staff as Innovation Leaders: From great ideas to great implementation | Editorial

RebeccaWebEdit2015

The community served by the Birmingham Public Library, AL, this October gained three new programs targeted to branch-level needs—Vintage Memory Making, with an eye to sewing and crafting; After School Writing, keyed to supporting penmanship, including cursive writing; and New Parenting, focused on helping caregivers through the first years. All three ideas stem from staff participation in the library’s recently launched Innovative Cool Award initiative, which interconnects the organization, including trustees, and helps the library be responsive to the community.

Feedback: Letters to LJ, October 15, 2016 Issue

Coming Write In, vote as you see fit, new skills for LIS, and more letters to editor from the October 15, 2016 issue of Library Journal.

Empathy as the Leader’s Path to Change | Leading From the Library

Steven Bell

You’re the leader. You have a vision. It will require real organizational change. Now what? Empathic leaders may do better at gaining followers than encouraging resistors.

User-Designed Libraries | Design4Impact

TeenHQ Grand Opening at Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library
Photo courtesy of San José Public Library

These days, collecting deep public input before the design phase of a new construction or renovation of a library is de rigueur, with methods ranging from focus groups to community outreach to social media. But a few libraries are taking it to the next level, not just finding out what patrons need or value and filtering that through the lens of librarian and architect expertise but also letting users directly drive design decisions in collaboration with the professionals.

Feedback: Letters to LJ, October 1, 2016 Issue

Aligning with Black Lives Matter?, all sides weigh in on Sci-Hub, keeping fair use out of court, and more letters to editor from the October 1, 2016 issue of Library Journal.

The Right Questions | Office Hours

michael-stephens_new

How do we find that perfect hire? A recent email from Kit Stephenson, head of reference and adult services at Bozeman Public Library, MT, got me thinking: “I am trying to find the best questions to find a full-stack employee. A couple of attributes I require are compassion, team player, and thrives on change. I want someone to be a conduit, connector, and a discoverer.” That call back to Stacking the Deck raised this question: How do we find a well-rounded person amid a virtual pile of résumés and cover letters? Please consider the following as part of your potential discovery sets for future interviews.

I Can’t Hear You…but I’m Still Listening | BackTalk

donna-walker

As adults, we might cover our ears with our hands at a loud blast or use headphones or earbuds to curate the sounds we want to enter our eardrums, but sticking our fingers in our ears and yelling, “I can’t hear you!” is usually frowned upon. I’m not proud to say that at a recent team meeting, I did just that. Of course, I did so in jest, but it got me thinking about how easy it is to dismiss ideas that I don’t want to hear.

Why LC Should Drop Illegal Aliens | BackTalk

jmorales-headshot

The Library of Congress (LC) sparked debate recently when it announced that it would no longer use the term illegal aliens as a subject heading. The library maintains that the phrase has become “pejorative,” a sentiment echoed by social justice projects such as Race Forward’s Drop the I-Word campaign. However, Republican lawmakers who introduced legislation to force the library to keep the term argue that the LC’s subject headings (LCSH) should be consistent with U.S. Code.

Leaning into LC’s Future: Carla Hayden seizes the moment | Editorial

RebeccaWebEdit2015

A new era has begun for the Library of Congress (LC), and if Carla Hayden’s first gestures in her role as Librarian of Congress signal sustained momentum to come, the LC of the future might just live up to the hopes of so many. Since her swearing in, on September 14, Hayden has set a compelling tone, one that is purposeful, inclusive, and infused with an important balance between the awesome responsibility of, and a sense of joy in, the work to come.

The Fix is Free | Programs That Pop

ljx161001webpop

What do you do with a broken toaster, a lamp with a frayed cord, or a shirt with a loose button? Toss it? No way! Massachusetts’s Westborough Public Library and the Rotary Club of Westborough partnered to offer Westborough’s first Repair Café at the library in March 2016.