Hard Look in the Mirror: Reflecting on the Role of the Librarian

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Hard Look in the Mirror: Reflecting on the Role of the Librarian Change Management Toolkit ALA Annual Conference June 2019

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Change Toolkit ALA Conference

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Community-Inspired Library Service Greater Victoria Public Library's Strategic Plan

2016 to 2020


The Changing Landscape • Organizational Change • Current Practices Not Sustainable • Library Trends • Evolving Nature of Librarian Work


Community-Inspired Library Service Model – Changing Role of PS Librarian


The Changing Role of the Librarian • What does it mean to be a “Librarian” today? • What can we do differently? • How can we be more effective, efficient and responsive to our communities?


Public Librarianship: Refocused & Refined What is the organizational infrastructure required to leverage the unique abilities and skills of librarians and create a service model to best meet the needs of our communities?


Guiding Principles • Start with the WHY...? • Librarians visioning, designing directing and implementing services to the Public • Wish to create a strong and cohesive Public Services Librarian Leadership Team • Librarian voice is important!


Role of the Librarian Project Survey What Do You See as the Role of a Librarian? 1) What makes Librarians valuable and unique to GVPL? 2) How should GVPL be staffing service points? 3) What do you see as the distinction between the role of the Librarian and the Library Assistant? 4) What are you doing in your current job that you could stop doing? Why? 5) What could you start doing? Include additional skills, expertise or interests that are currently not being utilized in your position as a professional Librarian. Re-Defining our Service Model Throughout our discussions, the following have been identified as either a gap in service or a broad category to help re-define our service model: • • • • • • • •

Digital Literacy/Services (includes Website) Reader’s Advisory/Discovery Business/Municipal Support Community Engagement/Outreach Life-Long Learning Information Service/Research Support Customer Experience/Service Early Literacy

What services are missing? Please share your ideas for re-defining our services.


Community-Inspired Library Community-Inspired Librarianship Overview I Community-Inspired GVPL is a community-inspired library. Our goal is to inspire and be inspired by all areas of community life. We connect individuals and community members to our services both within and outside the library. We offer engaging, inclusive services and spaces for people of all ages that inspire curiosity, support individual growth, and build community. Our community inspires our service. We recognize that developing and providing inspiring library services is tied to the vitality and opportunities for lifelong learning in the community.

Portfolio Service Model I Inspired Librarianship GVPL is committed to an integrated, system-wide and strategic service model. Public Services is further defined by librarian portfolios that focus on specific areas of interest and key areas of engagement, guided by our Strategic Plan, vision, mission and values. Portfolios, which are made up of one to three librarians, are aligned within three pillars: Engaged Communities & Lifelong Learning; Readers, Writers & Storytellers, and Digital Literacy & Learning. Community-inspired librarianship is rooted in concern for and support of democracy, equitable access, inclusivity, and evolving library practices. Public Services Librarians provide innovative leadership within the organization continuously seeking out best practices and strategies to deliver library services. Librarians build community capacity through active participation and engagement and work diligently to raise GVPL’s profile. Under the guidance of the Public Services Coordinators Leadership Team, and in collaboration with other departments, Public Services Librarians are responsible for all aspects of their portfolio area in the greater context of library service. These include: •

Branch Operations: Provide leadership in all aspects of branch operations including: creating welcoming and vibrant spaces, creating a constructive and positive staff environment, introduction of new services and improvements, development of best practices, oversight of branch-based programming and outreach, and liaising with Branch Supervisors, Senior Librarians and District Coordinators.

•

Collections: Foster an understanding of the library and its specialized resources in GVPL spaces and the community. Identify collection needs to meet the needs and interests of the community and work to provide free access to information, ideas, and imagination.


Communications: Ensure the library’s value is communicated to library users, stakeholders and the community at large. Lead in in the promotion of portfolio and branch-based initiatives.

Community Engagement: Lead representation and GVPL‘s presence in the community.

Community Partnerships: Leverage community connections and resources to build community and cultivate partnerships to pursue our vision of inspiring literacy, lifelong learning and community enrichment for all.

Customer Experience: Ensure that GVPL meets the diverse and unique needs of the community. Actively seek new strategies to provide inclusive, accessible, progressive and innovative library services.

Facilities: Actively seek to create welcoming, comfortable and safe library spaces for our communities. Build and maintain strong community connections by creating a place where community members gather to interact, explore and imagine.

Information Services: Ensure GVPL provides virtual and traditional information services in to inspire literacy, creativity, and lifelong learning. Develop innovative approaches to ensure the community can access a wealth of information in a variety of ways.

Reader’s Advisory: Lead the delivery of a readers’ advisory service at GVPL. Develop innovative approaches to ensure GVPL builds a reading culture in a variety of ways. Provide ongoing coaching and support on the use of online readers advisory tools by front line staff.

Metrics: Work to determine indicators of success in the community, evaluate library services and programs, and maintain a culture of continuous improvement.

Programming: Develop, deliver and lead inclusive and innovative programming that is literacy-based, responsive to community needs and interests, and leverages community partnerships.

Technology: Provide leadership in the development and implementation of leading edge user centered digital library services and incorporate new and innovative technologies to enhance access to resources and services.

GVPL’s inspired librarianship service model looks towards the future and provides us with a long-term view of public services planning and delivery.



Portfolio Spotlight Engaged Communities & Lifelong Learning: Diversity Diversity: Building Inclusive & Welcoming Communities Celebrating and acknowledging the diversity in our community that exists in multiple identities including: race, ethnicity, culture, linguistic origin, gender identity and sexual orientation.

Target Audiences • • • • •

Cultural groups Indigenous Peoples Newcomers (Immigrants and Refugees) LGBTQ2+ community All age groups

Guiding Principles Community Inspired Librarian Leadership • • • • • • •

Building community capacity through engagement and collaboration Customer stewardship Community leaders Internal policy and administration Information management Library's profile in the community Library's place at the community table

Customer Experience • • • • •

Inclusive and accessible services Innovative and dynamic programming Welcoming and informed staff Safe and comfortable spaces Barrier-free access

Community Engagement Programs • • • •

Asian Heritage Month (May) BC Settlement and Integration Services Program in partnership with VIRCS Beginner ESL Conversation classes in partnership with VIRCS Black History Month (February)


• • • • • • • • •

Indigenous Peoples History Month Islamic History Month (October) Newcomer Bags Provide 1:1 sessions on Mango Language Learning (online resource) Provide presentations to organizations about library services and programs Provide tours (ESL students through language schools, VIRCS, ICA, sponsorship groups, cultural groups) Seasonal and holiday celebrations (Chinese New Year, Christmas, Diwali, Hanukkah, St Patrick’s Day, Valentine’s Day etc.) World Refugee Day/Week (June)

Future: Conversation circles in languages other than English (Latin, French etc.)

Outreach • • • • • • •

Victoria Immigrant & Refugee Centre Society (VIRCS) Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria (ICA) First Nations • Songhees, Esquimalt, Tsartlip (develop relationships with other local First Nations communities). Cultural groups English Language Schools Newcomer groups for families Pride Week

Community Partnerships • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

African & Caribbean Cultural Society African Caribbean Students Association (UVic) African Heritage Association of Vancouver Island (AHAVI) BC Black History Awareness Society Camosun College Chinese Benevolent Association Citizenship and Immigration Canada Community Partnership Network (CPN) ESL Teachers Esquimalt First Nation Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria (ICA) Local Immigration Partnership Strategy (LIPS) Neighbourhood Houses Red Cross Refugee sponsors/constituent groups Songhees First Nation Tsartlip First Nation Tsawout First Nation Schools & School Districts Victoria Coalition for the Survivors of Torture Victoria Immigrant & Refugee Centre Society (VIRCS) Victoria Native Friendship Centre World University Service of Canada (WUSC) (UVic chapter)


Critical Resources Portfolio Librarian • • • • • •

Knowledgeable about print and electronic resources for newcomers Knowledgeable about print and electronic resources for First Nations Knowledgeable about relevant services in the community Available to plan and deliver presentations to community groups Knowledgeable about cultural diversity Establish partnerships with relevant organizations in the community

Communications •

• •

External communication to promote programs and services • print guide • social media • website • media Internal communication about programs, services and philosophy • Acknowledgement of traditional territories (GVPL staff/patrons/board acknowledge that we learn, work, and live on the traditional lands of the Xwsepsum (Esquimalt) and Lekwungen (Songhees) ancestors and families). Celebrate success (internally and externally) Provide opportunities for feedback

Collections • • • • • •

World Language collections for all ages in multiple formats (print, periodicals, digital, films, music, audiobooks) Language learning collections for all ages Bilingual picture books for children World Language and bilingual 'Stories to Go' kits for toddlers and pre-schoolers General film collection with subtitles or audio in multiple languages Literacy/ESL collection

Online Resources • • • •

Magazines & Newspapers Mango Language Learning Newspapers (Library Press Display) eResources

Facilities • • • •

Affordable and free space for group meetings, tutoring and language practice Spaces for children and families to read, use computers and engage with other families Gender neutral bathrooms Podcast/videocast equipment


Technology • Current software on public computers • Computer and Wi-Fi access • Understanding of emerging technologies Metrics • • • • • • •

Program attendance on topics related to portfolio Number of programs delivered on subjects related to portfolio People who indicate that they use library for purposes related to portfolio User perceptions Circulation of resources following programs related to portfolio Hits on online resources/GVPL website following programs related to portfolio Impact of GVPL services on specific communities including: newcomer community, LGBTQ2+ community, Indigenous Peoples


Community-Inspired Library Service Model – Project Timeline


Portfolio vs. Branch Responsibilities In the Community-Inspired Library Service model, portfolios take the lead on service development under the guidance of the Public Services Leadership team. Branch librarians and library assistants support the model by delivering the services and handling local arrangements. The chart below provides clarity on specific roles and responsibilities. Portfolios should refer to the portfolio documents for guidance and programmers should refer to the Programming and Outreach Staff Manual for detailed checklists. System-wide Services Portfolio | Public Services Librarian

Branch Services Public Services Librarian

Branch Services & System-wide Services Public Services Library Assistants

Leadership: • Lead, coordinate, develop and evaluate system-wide services, programs and community partnerships. • Champion GVPL’s Strategic Plan and Business Plan. • Develop, lead and deliver Annual Portfolio Plan. • Provide Service recommendations and input to Public Services Team. • Sit on internal and/or external committees as assigned. • Support and mentor staff.

Leadership: • Lead branch services, programs and community partnerships, and work collaboratively with Branch Supervisor, Library Assistant and Branch staff. • In collaboration with Branch Supervisors and Library Assistant(s), prepare annual branch plan for programming, services, outreach and displays. • Lead, develop, and provide branch training in collaboration with Branch Supervisor and/or Portfolio. • Sit on internal and/or external committees as assigned • Provide a branch leadership role in delivering information services, reader’s advisory and digital support • In consultation with District Coordinator and branch staff, assist with day-to-day branch operations e.g. scheduling/program coverage. • Support and mentor staff. • Leadership role at community tables, events and meetings.

Leadership: • In collaboration with Public Services Librarian(s), deliver programs and outreach events (system-wide and branch). • In collaboration with Public Services Librarian(s), assist in the preparation of an annual branch plan for programs, outreach and displays. • Provide training as directed. • Sit on internal GVPL committees as assigned. • Champion GVPL’s Strategic Plan and Business Plan. • Handle system-wide duties as assigned.

Customer Service: • Champion excellent customer service and Integrated Service. • In collaboration with Coordinator, develop system- wide training (e.g. digital services, readers’ advisory, and customer service). Information Services and Readers Advisory: • Lead System-wide Information Services and Readers Advisory within both virtual and traditional library spaces. * (navigate) Programming and Outreach: • Develop, deliver and lead innovative programming and outreach services that are accessible and responsive to community needs.

Customer Service: • Model and provide excellent customer service and Integrated Service. • Advise Public Services Librarian(s) and District Coordinator of challenges and opportunities on how the branch can improve customer service at the local level. • Support branch staff in managing/reporting challenging incidents.


• •

System-wide Services Portfolio | Public Services Librarian

Branch Services Public Services Librarian

Branch Services & System-wide Services Public Services Library Assistants

Coordinate system-wide outreach events as related to portfolio assignment. Provide programming and outreach information and support to staff. Responsible for following and ensuring assigned tasks are met within GVPL’s Programming & Outreach Manual. Book programs at other branches using booking program instructions: \Booking program spaces & hosts at branches.docx

Customer Service: • Champion excellent customer service and Integrated Service. • Ensure inclusive, accessible, progressive and innovative library services at the branch level. • Work with Branch Supervisor in providing customer service, program and outreach (e.g. digital services, readers advisory, customer service). • Advise District Coordinator of challenges and opportunities on how the branch can improve customer service at the local level. • Lead branch staff in managing/reporting challenging incidents. • Lead branch communication eg. customer service, tickets and social media.

Information Services and Readers Advisory: • Provide Information Services and Readers Advisory (virtual and traditional) at the branch level.

Community Partnerships: • As directed, attend portfolio-related meetings, events and programs. • Leverage community connections and resources; cultivate partnerships related to your portfolio assignment. Facilities and Finance: • Provide facilities, space and/or placemaking recommendations to Public Services Coordinators. • Tracks and manages portfolio expenses per the annual amount provided by the Public Services Coordinators. • Coordinates portfolio based systemwide expenses eg. SRC. Collections: • Foster and understanding of the library and its specialized resources (virtual and physical)

Programming and Outreach: • Under the guidance of Branch and Portfolio Librarian(s) plan and deliver inhouse programs, outreach and group visits. See Programming and Outreach Manual for detailed checklists. Community Partnerships: • Attend community meetings as assigned. Facilities and Finance: • Work with Branch Librarians to purchase, manage and track locally required program supplies eg. Toy cleaning V:\Public_Services\Portfolio Documents\Portfolio Recommendations\Branch Toy Cleaning and Maintenance Procedure.docx • Work with Portfolio Librarians to order system-wide supplies as needed e.g. SRC incentives, Black History Month posters.

Information Services and Readers Advisory: • Lead, develop and support branch Information Services and Collections: Readers Advisory (virtual and • Ensure the branch collection is traditional). promoted, weeded, attractive according to collections guidelines Programming and Outreach: • Please see: V:\Collections_Technical • Ensure system-wide programs, Services_140\Collections Manual services and outreach are provided within their designated Technology: • Provide digital programming and branch (e.g. Food for Fines). services at the local level. • Ensure responsibilities are met • Responsible for promoting GVPL virtual within GVPL’s programming and library and services (e.g. database, outreach staff manual. website, eBooks…).


System-wide Services Portfolio | Public Services Librarian • •

Ensure the collection meets current trends related to your portfolio Actively look for opportunities to promote collection related to your portfolio.

Technology: • Provide leadership in the development and implementation of leading edge, user-centered digital library services related to your portfolio. • Incorporate new and innovative technology to enhance access to resources and services related to your portfolio. • Champion GVPL’s digital services, resources and virtual spaces. Communications: •

Responsible for creating content for Communications in relation to your portfolio. Provide system-wide communication and updates to staff (Compass, CEO report, Website, Social Media, and Program guide). Alert PS Coordinators and Communications Dept/Social Media of need for special promotion e.g. press release and promotional materials. Speak to media upon request of supervisor and Communications Department. Conferences & Awards: Be aware of award opportunities and prepare conference proposals that may fit

Branch Services Public Services Librarian

Branch Services & System-wide Services Public Services Library Assistants

Community Partnerships: • As directed, attend community partner meetings.

Facilities and Finance: In collaboration with District Coordinator and Branch Supervisor, ensure the branch looks attractive and welcoming.

Work with Library Assistants to purchase, manage and track locally required program supplies. Collections: • Oversight of branch collection to ensure attractiveness and appropriate balance and collection levels. • In accordance with Collections guidelines, maintain the integrity of our physical collections. • Please see: V:\Collections_Technical Services_140\Collections Manual

Technology: • Champion digital services and training at the branch. • Lead the development and implementation of user centered digital library services at the branch. Communications: • Ensure weekly staff communication is created and provided to staff eg. What’s Happening

• •

Collaborates with librarian(s) in the development of branch communication e.g. What’s Happening, white boards, posters. Post program and outreach content on Compass. In collaboration with librarian(s) advise Social Media Team when programs need extra promotion. Speaks to media upon request of supervisor and Communications Department. Conferences & Awards: Work with Portfolio Librarians to develop conference proposals and presentations. Assist with initial formatting of print guide. Please see children’s, tween & teen programs and adult programs/.

Metrics: • Ensure branch program and outreach attendance is entered into program calendar (Events). • Work with Branch Librarian(s) to enter programs and outreach into program calendar (Events). • Enter meetings with community partners into program calendar (Events) for tracking purposes.


System-wide Services Portfolio | Public Services Librarian within your portfolio projects and consult with DCs and Public Service Coordinators. Metrics: • Responsible for identifying outcomes under the direction of the Public Services Team. • Provide narratives that support outcomes. • Enter meetings with community partners into program calendar (Events) for tracking purposes. • Ensure data is collected e.g. program and outreach statistics are entered into program calendar (Events). • Develop, meet and communicate system-wide targets to branch librarians.

Branch Services Public Services Librarian •

Ensure promotion of branch programming, outreach and services.

Metrics: • Enter meetings with community partners into program calendar (Events) for tracking purposes. • Ensure programs and attendance are entered into program calendar (Events) e.g. One-on-ones and early literacy programs

Branch Services & System-wide Services Public Services Library Assistants


Role of the Librarian Evaluation Survey LEADERSHIP (Have we succeeded in building community capacity and raising GVPL’s profile in our communities?) CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE (Have we met the needs of our communities with new strategies for inclusive, progressive and innovative library service?) INFORMATION SERVICES AND READERS' ADVISORY (Has Community Inspired Library Service met community needs for information services and readers advisory in our traditional and virtual spaces?) PROGRAMMING & OUTREACH (Are we delivering programs and outreach which are innovative, accessible and responsive to community needs?) COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS (Have we leveraged community connections and resources to achieve our vision of inspiring literacy, lifelong learning and community enrichment for all?) FACILITIES (Has Community Inspired library services improved our ability to create welcoming spaces and places where community members may gather to interact and explore?) COLLECTIONS (Have we fostered an understanding of the library and its resources?) TECHNOLOGY (Have we successfully provided leadership in the development and incorporation of user centered digital services and innovative technologies to enhance access to resources and services? COMMUNICATIONS (Have we effectively communicated the value of GVPL to our users, stakeholders and to our communities? METRICS (Have we effectively determined indicators of success and maintained a culture of continuous improvement under Community Inspired Library Service?) Questions: What will Community- Inspired Library Service look like in 5 years? Please share your top concerns:


The secret to change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old, but on building the new - Socrates

MOVING FORWARD

HAPPINESS

COMPLACENCY

FEAR

THREAT


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