I recently posted “Five Ways to Connect with your Community” at the Public Libraries Online blog. But for some libraries, especially in small and rural libraries, staffing the public service desk is the priority and patrons, well, they need your help! Leaving the library may not be an option for everyone.
So, I looked at my post again from the perspective of a small library. Can you still do outreach and not leave the building? Can you really get involved in your community without stepping outside your four walls? Yes, to a certain degree, if can do these things:
- Work the phone
- Update your social media & make connections
- Write well – and get published in community blogs & local newspapers
- Work the phone some more…
- Invite community members to meet with you in the library (for a tour or meeting)
- Read city or town meeting notes and involve the library where appropriate
There are many ways to connect without every leaving your library. Making a community impact is not impossible in a small library- it just takes some time and ingenuity. If you have had to think of creative ways provide outreach let me know!
“What if librarians were fully engaged in their communities (yes, I know many are) and well-networked with their municipal counterparts, stakeholders, elected officials, trustees, and patrons (yes, even patrons). Wouldn’t forging such positive professional relationships help boost the perception and attitudes about the library
and the librarian?”–Read more from my recent post at Public Libraries Online. Happy Valentine’s!
I stumbled upon a huge opportunity for librarians who want to showcase their services to children and I wrote about it in my most recent blog post over at Public Libraries Online. And, in the process, gain exposure in their community and increase awareness of the importance of libraries in a child’s life. Libraries can make such a difference in the life of a child. Well, I won’t recreate my post here, so head on over to Public Libraries Online to read more. #tycttld
Usually I try to write before I attend a conference, but this year time got away from me. I will tell you, though, that this year’s state library conference was one of the best I have attended in a long time. And I think, why was it so good? Programming, keynotes, venue? Well, I’d have to say, “Yes! All of that.”
This year’s conference was themed “Making Connections” and it was held in Flagstaff, AZ at Northern Arizona University. Our keynotes were Patrick Sweeney and Michael Stephens, names you should know very well. The conference center was incredible (lovely fireplace), the food was, I would say exquisite and plentiful. There was breakfast, drinks, coffee & tea with incredible dessert (did someone say cheesecake).
The programming choices were very varied–something for everyone, I would say. I gave my ‘Network Like You Mean It’ and my ‘Speak Up’ programs which fit in nicely with the conference theme. I attended a few very interesting programs myself. Mostly, I enjoyed meeting new friends and seeing old friends.
Librarians are quite a varied bunch – librarians from all types of libraries specializing in all sorts of different things and serving all types of different users. Quite a fascinating and enlightening time!
Nothing more I enjoy than talking “library” shop, so if you are so inclined, hop onto the PLA Blog and comment on my most recent posts at PLA Online. I began blogging for PLA Online this summer, and so, if you know me you would know I love writing, but blogging is even better. Why? Because readers have an opportunity to post and that is the best part– having a conversation with the readers. I especially like it when you agree with me, just saying! Seriously, chime in because it helps me to learn and understand more about what’s really going on in the great big world of public libraries.