Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Your Best Customer Service

Today's post comes to us from Patti Vincent at Multnomah County Library. Patti was one-half of the customer service duo presenting "Internal Customer Service - Support Staff Working Together" at our conference last year.


Excellent Service... When it's ALL about YOU:

No doubt, our own personal mindset can make a huge impact on the quality of our service.  That's why excellent customer service starts with taking great care of ourselves.  We can pamper our minds and bodies by getting enough quality sleep, balancing our diet and exercising regularly.

Still, there are moments in the day we all need a little pick-me-up.  Instead of grabbing another cup of coffee or a piece of chocolate, try a refreshing glass of water and a few calm cleansing breaths.  Even better, grab a quick walk outside to get the blood flowing.  You may be surprised how quickly you are feeling back in the swing.

Excellent Service... When it's NOT all about YOU:

Even our best selves can be tripped up by someone having their own bad day.  Check your own behavior, take another calming breath and remember QTIP = Quit Taking it Personally.   

I remember a regular customer who always seemed to be in such an incredibly bad mood all the time.  One day her husband called to ask about a book for himself.  As our conversation closed, he took a moment to thank me and the rest of our staff for being consistently nice to his wife.  "She's been sick and is in chronic pain.  Going to the library is the only trip she makes out of the house. I know she can be difficult, I just wanted you to know why."   

We don't always get the back story.  We can't read minds.  But if we can keep focused on making each transaction positive, we may be making a difference greater than we'll ever know.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Scholarship Opportunity for OLA/WLA!

The Documents Interest Group of Oregon (DIGOR) is pleased to announce a scholarship opportunity for an individual with an interest in government information to attend the 2013 OLA/WLA Joint Conference, April 24-26, 2013:
DIGOR will reimburse the scholarship recipient for the conference registration fee.

Eligibility: librarians or library staff working with government information in an Oregon library, or library school students with an interest in government information enrolled in an ALA-accredited library program, and living in Oregon.  

Application process: Complete the online application form, available on the DIGOR homepage: Applicants are asked to submit two essays (250 words maximum for each essay) describing the applicant’s current library position and/or interest in government information services,and how attending the OLA conference may further develop the applicant’s interest in government information and/or library service.
Applications must be submitted by March 1st, 2013. All applicants will be contacted by the first week of April.

Please contact Tiffany Thornton with any questions:

Tiffany Thornton
Government Documents Technician
UO Libraries
University of Oregon

Library Stretch Break - Best Hand Stretches

Image courtesy of Simon Howden
Have you taken a stretch break today? Hands can get really tired when shelving and that can lead to injury, or using a bad technique to shelve, which can then lead to injuries.

Here are some good stretches, and if you've ever been to a physical therapist, the artwork will look familiar to you. What other stretches do you use for your hands or wrists? Have you found anything that works really well for you?

Monday, February 11, 2013

Great Libraries on Film. No, really.

There was a great post by Jessamyn West a while back that guides journalists on how to represent library staff accurately in the media. We all know there is a significant gap between the most of the public's perception of libraries (shushing!) and what actually happens in them.  So, understandably, I was a little hesitant to look at this Bookriot list of Great Library Scenes In Film, however there were some pleasant surprises as many more "special collections" were included than expected. 

Are there any significant ones missing? Party Girl starring the indie darling Parker Posey is conspicuously absent, and has an hilariously vicarious exchange between library staff and a patron reshelving a book. Not that any of us would really ever do that.

Oh, and Doctor Who, of course, for an extra specially creepy library.

And a stereotypically outdated view of libraries in the latest round of superbowl ads.

What's your favorite library scene in a movie or television?  Did any of these particularly resonate with you? Do you find them to be accurate, or laughably misguided?

Monday, February 4, 2013

The Applestore Library (Again)

I'm sure by now you've heard of the "bookless" library that has just opened in San Antonio, TX.  If you haven't, there's a plethora of news outlets covering it: NPR, Mashable, engadget, treehugger, the verge, rt, some comparing it to an Apple store.  Skimming the articles, there are different coverages of the different pros and cons associated with it.  However, as usual, I saw nothing about how the library is staffed.  Do they have support staff? There are questions about availability of ebook titles from publishers, and how long ereaders last, but little about the running of the library itself.

So, dear readers, if this is the direction libraries are headed, how do you see your job changing?  What would a support staff job in a library like that look like?  Would we be called "Library Geniuses" that work at the Genius Bar?