Wednesday, April 27, 2005

The innovation gap

Meredith Farkas in her blog Information Wants To Be Free wrote a great piece earlier this month on innovation in libraries. Meredith wrote, "I see these three types of libraries – those that are change agents, those who keep up, and those that are change averse..."

We all know of a library that seems to be change averse. We struggle with how to get that library to understand what it is doing to itself. If it doesn't change and keep up with its patrons, it will become obsolete.

Change comes by focusing on your patrons' needs. Do you know what they need? Consider these questions to get you thinking:
  • What books are your patrons reading? You know what is being circulated from your library, but do you really know what they're reading from bookstores and newsstands?

  • What information are your patrons looking for online? Is it information that your library carries or should carry?

  • What can you do to get "out in front" and lead your patrons to the innovations that they will be using next? Now that's a question worth mulling over a tall cup of coffee.

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