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Getting the Library Cat to Roar October 5, 2006

Posted by sharynheili in Uncategorized.

Librarians here at MCPL have been discussing Stephen Abram’s article, Waiting for Your Cat to Bark- Competing with Google and Its Ilk.  In Part two, published today, he discusses the strenghts and weaknesses of libraries.  

What do libraries do well? 

  1. We are biased toward our communities’ needs  and providing quality information.  We focus on protecting and empowering our users.
  2. Our focus is the community.
  3. We are all about learning in all its forms.
  4. Libraries know how to select the best information from the plethora of available information.
  5. Librarians excel at improving the quality of the question; questions are our business; we don’t have to guess at answers.
  6.  We’re good at answering the how and why questions based on good reference interview techniques.  
  7. We understand context and know how to deliver what is right for the context.
  8. We do local very well;  we need to extend our reach.
  9. Libraries know how to develop collections well.
  10. We provide the personal human touch in this increasingly depersonalized world.

What do libraries do poorly?

  1. Libraries are poor at marketing and promotion.
  2. We need to sell ourselves better.
  3. Libraries need to merchandise themselves in an engaging way.
  4. Librarians need to advocate better for libraries.
  5. Libraries need to take collaboration to the next level.
  6. We need to connect better to the educational communities and make our services relevant to learning communities.
  7. We need to enlarge our repertoire–become known for more than books.

Read the complete article here and prepare to make your libary ROAR!




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