Presentation to Durham County Library staff on their staff day, May 10, 2007
1. Its not about ME -- its about YOU Durham County Library Staff Day 2007 Theresa E. Cummings Manager, Libraries IT Department Wake County Libraries [email_address]
2. So who am I?
Manager of Libraries IT Department at Wake County Public Libraries
In current position since January 2000.
Arrived full of energy and naivet.
Quickly realized the department was growing, and growing and growing
Am living proof that you can become a different librarian than you dreamed youd be in Library School.
3. The way we were
In January 2000:
Our system had 17 branches, with approximately 250 PCs being used by library staff and our public.
The majority of technology in our library branches was dumb terminals.
A majority of our electronic resources were in CD-ROM format requiring customers to visit a library branch to use.
Our annual book circulation was between 5-6 million.
Our customer base was approximately 600,000 citizens. The number of library card holders was approximately 225,000.
4. Growing and growing
In January 2007:
We reopened our North Regional Library, capping off four major library constructions/renovations in one year, bringing the total number of branches to 19 and the number of PCs supported to nearly 1,200.
Technology is found in many forms throughout the library WiFi, public Internet access, electronic management of PC usage and public printing, and more!
All of our electronic resources are online, and thanks to NC LIVE, are numerous in breadth and depth.
Our annual book circulation will surpass 8.5 million.
Our customer base is approximately 786,000 citizens. The number of library card holders is over 374,000.
5. WCPL Culture
Build libraries where people live and give them access to everything theyll need from their local library
A popular collection is what our customers want
Requesting books should be easy and unrestricted
Services to children is our #1 priority
Give employees the information they need to make free, informed decisions.
Less rules, more guidelines
Volunteers our clean little secret
Self service makes sense
6. How do we encourage this culture?
Facilitative Leadership model
Customer Service model
The Power of Nice
7. Facilitative Leadership Model
Created by Roger Schwarz ( www.schwarzassociates.com )
The Skilled Facilitator Approach
Ground Rules for Effective Groups
Core values of: Valid information, free and informed choice, internal commitment, and compassion
All library employees are exposed to these ground rules, and we use them in all meetings and committees.
Its hard work requiring constant practice!
8. Customer Service Model
Superior customer service is a mindset, not an activity
We hold regular Customer Service Workshops for all library employees, covering areas including:
Avoiding Library Lingo
Customer service via phone or email
Serving external AND internal customers
Highlighting the differences in perceptions and motivations based upon personality types.
Dealing with challenging customers use the L.A.S.T. formula:
L isten to the customer
A cknowledge the customers concern
S olve the concern (if possible) and sympathize
T hank the customer
9. A Culture of Nice
We minimize punitive responses
We empower each employee to break the rules when necessary to meet a customers needs and ensure a positive experience
Its not necessary (or possible) to treat everyone the same. Strive to treat each customer as they wish to be treated. This requires good communication skills to find out hidden meanings
Customers dont care what you know, until they know that you care
10. IT Culture @ WCPL
We are Library employees who happen to be in the IT Department.
YES is the answer
Theres no I in IT, err, well, you know what I mean
Partnerships make it happen
Transparency is essential
Take advantage of all opportunities to learn
Be proactive in making sure your customers are happy
Keep your mouth OPEN
11. Our Challenges for the Future
Continuing to keep up with the demand for library services in Wake County (bond referendums, capital building projects)
Continuing to attract and retain the best library employees who love their jobs and are committed to providing excellent customer service.
Constantly evaluating our services by asking the question: Is this what our customers want?
Increase the visibility of Libraries as the #1 asset of Wake County.
Not resting on our laurels, thinking we have it all figured out.
12. Top 10 ideas to help you make the leap:
13. #10 Talk to the right people, oh and listen too.
14. #9 Take the blinders off and throw them away
15. #8 Dont think you have to build it yourself
16. #7 Throw perfection out the window
17. #6 Keep telling yourself: This is my job
18. #5 Whine with purpose
19. #4 Find new ways to do your job
20. #3 Never underestimate willingness to engage in meaningful work
21. #2 READ, READ, READ
22. #1 Remember its ALWAYS about the customer
23. Leaping People and Ideas
Helene Blowers ( librarybytes.com )
David Lee King ( davidleeking.com )
Patricia Martin ( LitLamp.com )
Google Alerts ( google.com/alerts ), Google Reader ( google.com/reader )