Going to the Field
Sometimes it seems like higher-ups create policy without a feel for what actually happens on desks throughout the library. Often, those higher ups are labeled “out of touch.”...
...It's not entirely the fault of the administration. Those people in accounting and collection development and, yes, even IT, perhaps have never worked in a library. Oh, they work in the offices of a library, but they've never really stood at a reference desk and answered questions during science project season, or dealt with an angry mother who just found something she refers to as “erotica” (or worse) in the children's area. They've never had to juggle those “in-your-face” customer needs with administrative tasks.
Don't misunderstand; those administrators deal with an entirely different set of demands and duties, but the purpose of the library is to meet the needs of the user. Remember, the service desks, branches, and satellites are the front lines in your library's ability to deliver quality customer service.
So how do you get administrators and support staffers to understand the daily operations of the real library?
Find out how by reading the full column text.