I asked if attendees had learned something innovative or new at the
conference that theyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢d like to take back to their libraries. Almost
everyone raised their hands. Then I followed up with this question: how
many will take that cool, innovative idea back to their libraries, and
hit a brick wall with administrators when they try to implement that
ALMOST EVERYONE RAISED THEIR HANDS.
This is not good.
Not good indeed. This is a message that I hear a lot, and one that you may have noticed I have blogged about before. And it is not just your own managers, it is the managers of other influential departments (ICT for example! ) that need to ‘hear the message’ Lots of brick walls.
David asks for ideas on ways we can change this, so here goes…
- Talk about it. Name drop the new things that you want to do, and keep name dropping. You know how when you buy a new car of a particular shade that you thought was different, and then subsequently find yourself noticing them everywhere, well it is the same with managers and colleagues. If your managers get to meet other people in other libraries/authorities, eventually you will find that your managers and colleagues start coming to you to ask about this [insert name here]-thing.
- Start talking to other departments – or more accurately, start getting other departments interested in what you are doing.
- Mention the cost savings, and the service improvements, with regard to certain performance indicators.
- Get front-line staff on your side – again by talking.
- And perhaps one of the best ways is to get your users to make their feelings vocal. After all, none of these technologies should be implemented with a “it’s for your own good” attitude; there is no bigger turn off.
In all it’s a whole lot of talking – so make sure you also drink plenty of water – or otherwise meet with folks where the water is stronger…
But please no Brickbats. The argument that goes something like “you are so out of touch, you are a dinosaur, can’t you see your library is changing?” will almost certainly leave you feeling despondent and your manager feeling bruised.
Smile and be nice!