So Much To Do… What Should I do First?

So I’ve been complaining about not knowing what to do next. I have my personal life goals sorted out as in this post, and I’m still figuring out my professional goals, but I’m just not sure where to start within my library system because there is so much that I want to do. There are quite a few large projects that I want to take on at the branch I work at right now, but I have no idea what I would do first. So I created this list because people asked me what it was that I wanted to do and also as a way for me to keep track of all my ideas. Let me know what you think!

Volunteering Program
Fully develop a volunteering program that establishes job roles and duties and outlines a training program. Implement this program to create a “staff” of volunteers to relieve staff of some of the day-to-day duties of maintaining the branch to allow them to perform larger duties with more significant results.

Graffiti Arts
The library needs some more modern art… Badly. Currently, the art on the walls was put there in the 80s but its from an African Art collection from far earlier and its representative of the culture of the community as it was about 25 years ago. Since then, the community has drastically changed and some new art needs to be displayed. The Police had a program that encouraged young graffiti artists to use their skills more positively. I would love to partner with this group to paint a graf mural on some of our blank walls.

Establish a Friends of the Library Group
This library has not had a FOL group for approximately 10 years. There are a number of barriers to establishing the group but I believe the need for community outreach and the ability to expand programs and services far outweigh the hardship of the barriers.

Create a Community Newsletter
A community newsletter could help to bring in more patrons for programs and services that are offered as well as notify patrons of new programs and services.

Improve Wayfinding and use of Space
The current configuration of the library does not currently lend itself to efficient wayfinding for patrons. Movement of furniture and better signage can create a useful library space as well as allow access to some of the “hidden” collections.

Simplify the Organization of Digital Information in the Library System
Currently the library system uses a wide number of information systems for communication. For example- staff email, Blogs, Servers, Websites, are all provided via different methods and therefore require a number of different passwords and access systems. Are each of these necessary? Can it be simplified?

Centralized Ordering
Develop and implement a plan for standardizing and centralizing the office supply ordering. The savings to the library system could be significant through the purchase of supplies in bulk and through re-negotiated contracts for larger orders.

Development of instrument collection and system wide music programs
The library could work to provide a collection of musical Instruments for check-out. Specifically, I was thinking guitars but this could be expanded or changed. For example in the library it might be hugely successful to check out Ukuleles. These check-outs would be in conjunction with a series of group classes lasting 8 weeks, during which time the students would have the instruments checked-out to them.

Roaming Reference and Mobile Devices
Develop and implement a plan to utilize mobile technology such as PDAs, smart phones, and other hand held electronic devices to assist in roaming (mobile?) reference and check-outs “on the go.”

Development of a Social Media campaign
Create a more robust online profile for the library system utilizing many of the online social networks and static sites to increase the library’s level of Online Social Capital. This could be done through the creation of a plan at the branch level to increase community involvement, or by creating one larger profile for the entire system.

Text Book Collection
There are a number of schools in the surrounding community served by the library. The library should establish closer partnerships with these groups and provide the services and materials needed by the students. These materials include research, book reports, and textbooks.

QR Codes
So, I’m not sure where I got this idea but I’m pretty sure I didn’t come up with it. I want to place QR codes around the community in significant areas where people can scan the codes to find more information about that place (or activity that occurs in that area) in the catalog. So, for example, books on hiking on mountain trails linked to a QR code placed at the head of the trail.

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About pcsweeney

Currently, I'm the Branch Manager of the East Palo Alto Library in California. If you find yourself to be extremely bored (and would like to be more bored) you can find all of my internet mind droppings about libraries by googling pcsweeney.
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