Wednesday, July 31, 2013

We're talking SMACSS (Smack), SASS, and Dribbble!

Acquia Man!
Acquia Man
You can't stop the beat!
If you think these terms sound like something involving children, think again, lol!  They are just a few of the unique terms that were flying around at the latest Capital Camp DC on July 26th & 27th.  Capital Camp DC is a Drupal (open source content management system) camp that brings together developers, designers and even IT managers seeking out employees, to talk about all things Drupal.

There were hundreds of developers, designers and IT managers who converged on the campus of George Washington University in hopes of taking home some great new Drupal techniques and most importantly, new modules to help make Drupal work better and faster for our customers.

So what about those terms you say?  Well first we have SMACSS (pronounced smack). Smack may be something that a Redskins fan and a Ravens fan talk back and forth to each other, but in the Drupal world SMACSS is Scalable Modular Architecture for Cascading Style Sheets [CSS].  Still sound too techie? In layman's terms, it's basically just a better way to apply fonts, colors, layouts and design on a website.  SMACSS is used more as a style guideline as opposed to a rigid framework.  It (SMACSS) attempts to document consistency in site development when using CSS.  I like to put it this way, if we were playing the game "Name that Tune", if you can name that tune in 10 notes, if I was applying it to SMACSS, I could name that tune in 5 notes.  So basically I'm doing the same thing, only I'm using less code to write it and I can apply the code more globally to the site, without writing more code.  Hope that makes sense.  Forgive me if it's still too techie, I am after all a geek (but I'm a "cool" geek, lol!). 

Then we were talking a lot of SASS!  No sass isn't the kind of talk you get from a know-it-all pre-teen or teenager, for those of you who have known that luxury, lol.  SASS is Syntactically Awesome StyleSheets or some like to call them, stylesheets with attitude. SASS is again, a better way to build StyleSheets using less code and basically having less repetition.  The "less is more" motto.  If I could get all of my websites built with a "less is more" concept on the outside, it would be a perfect world! Alas, it can't always be that way, but I'm trying! :)

Dribbble isn't really anything pertaining specifically to Drupal, but a few of the presenters dropped it so of course I had too find out what all the buzz was about.  Dribbble is not something you wipe off of the face of a teething toddler, lol, Dribbble is actually like a grown up "Show and Tell" website.  Dribbble is basically show and tell for designers.  Web designers, graphic designers, illustrators, icon artists, typographers, logo designers, and other creative types share small screenshots (shots) that show their work, process, and current projects. Pretty cool!  Check it out here:

Those were just some of the more interesting things that I learned; some of the coolest things I learned were about some great modules that I can test out on some of my existing Drupal sites (WCFL Intranet, WCFL Summer Reading Club and Choose Civility.)  Modules are basically like adding "features" to your website.  Since Drupal is an open source product, thousands of modules are created and you don't always know what the latest and greatest ones are unless you go to a Drupal event.  I also learned that if I want to be an "established" Drupal developer, I should get started creating my own Drupal module.  Ehh...I don't know if that's going to happen anytime soon, but there is always hope that in one of my idle moments I could create the next great Drupal module!

I could go into greater detail about all that I learned, but so as not to bore you with more techy terms I'll just pass along some of the cooler websites that I learned about while I was there.  This was a session on site performance and trends.  Here are a few websites to check out:
  •  - Runs a free website speed test from multiple locations around the globe using real browsers (IE and Chrome) and at real consumer connection speeds.
  • GooglePageSpeed - Analyzes the website and then gives suggestions for better performance
  • Yahoo YSlow - Analyzes the website and then gives suggestions for better performance
  • WhichLoadsFaster - Is a bit of friendly competition for websites to compare 2 or more website performance
  • - is a website that tracks trends for how websites have been built over the years.
Overall, the 2013 Capital Camp DC was as informative as always.  Sometimes it is so much information that you can't always wrap your head around it.  I am looking forward to applying some newer modules that I found out about to my existing sites, but new modules always come with a risk.  You may break something when you apply it, so it's always best to proceed with caution and to remember to back-up your data before hand so that you can restore the site back to what it was prior to the module being applied.

Well that's a brief look into the world of Drupal.  Thanks for reading my extra long summary!

PS.  I forgot to mention Acquia Man!  Acquia Man was just one of those cool tools they always seem to pass out at these type of events.  Acquia is actually company that specializes in Drupal tools and hosting, they provide support for their products for a fee.  They package the best of Drupal and make it available without having to do much work on your own.  Many of the speakers were from Acquia, so they are one of the premier companies when it comes to Drupal.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Give a Pickle, Get a Smile

My general feelings on the training were that it was beneficial.   It was good to be reminded of the simple things we have the power to do that can make someone else’s day (the pickles).  Since taking the training, I’m more mindful of smiling on the phone, thinking of how customers are observing my actions, and trying to maintain consistency in customer service.   

Twitter for Libraries

I have twitter but I don’t actively tweet.  I’ve heard that Twitter is where the young kids are hanging out now so I thought I should learn more about it.  I watched the webcast of MLA’s SMUG groups’ presentation on: Twitter for Libraries.  (The webcast is still available at: if you are interested.)

The rules covered in the webcast are similar to those for all social media but it’s nice to be reminded to follow them all, especially: this is a marathon, not a race.  You have to keep going until you get an audience.  For this reason, I’m not sure Twitter is something we’ll start for the Boonsboro branch as I have enough time trying to keep our Facebook updated.  I learned from the webcast the do’s & don’ts of posting, what the heck those abbreviations mean ( ), and a couple of new twitter handles to follow.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

So I went to ALA, now what?

You might have noticed a flurry of blog posts about sessions I attended while at ALA in Chicago. But sharing what I learned in those sessions isn't quite enough; I really need to think about and speculate how I might use what I learned. How will I change my ways now that I know what I know?

Example #1: Partnerships in Unlikely Places
I just had an idea, just 5 minutes ago, that I should call Best Buy's corporate headquarters and ask them if they could come to western Maryland and do a workshop on Technology Users Advisory. We always get asked, "which tablet/device/ereader should I buy?" How well are we answering those questions? So, why not learn from the experts. They could also recommend which technologies we should pay attention to. 

Consequently, I have to call back - they weren't open yet.

I had a similar idea that involves Apple. They have some of the best customer service practices I've ever experienced so, why not ask them if they could do a 'think differently about customer service' workshop for us? Assuming my budget can accommodate their fees. If my budget cannot accommodate their fees, maybe this would be a good workshop to have sponsored by several MD library systems, or the other two regionals, or DLDS.

I have to call back - they weren't open yet either; they're on Pacific Time.

I have another example that involves a special project I'm working on with a fellow Leadership Washington County alum, who isn't a librarian nor does he work in libraries. He's an analytical MBA type who has the ability to transform data sets into interesting and engaging visuals for the marketing arm of a bio-tech company. We're both very excited about this project because we, well, I should only speak for myself here, I have very big imaginings that this will do great things for the Washington County community once it's up and running. We are still in the planning phase, talking with key stakeholders and the like so, I won't disclose more until it gets closer to the actual pilot launch. #teaser

Example #2: Experimentation and Innovation in Libraries
This program was all about what libraries can learn from lean startups.

The first thing I took to heart was the extremely simplistic notion of talking to people. Talking to lots of people. Case in point, every year I send out a training needs assessment survey to all of the staff in the three western MD counties in an attempt to find out what they need me to do for them in the coming year in regards to learning and development. After the results are in I try to schedule follow up meetings with the three staff development coordinators in the three counties. This year was no different. However, as a result of this ALA session, I've also started meeting with department heads and branch managers to have similar conversations and so far these meetings have proven to be extremely helpful and have provided much guidance. I still need to schedule these meetings in Garrett and Allegany counties.

One of the immediate benefits of having these conversations is that we identify training need overlap. For example, I was talking with Elizabeth Hulett, the head of adult services in WCFL, and she said that she had tasked one of her librarians to learn there is all to know about the Obama Care initiative that will be taking effect in a few months. Then, when I spoke with WCFL's branch coordinator, Jan Viands, I asked Jan if her staff would need to know about Obama Care, too and of course, they would. So, Shannon (WCFL librarian) and I have somewhat joined forces in identifying sources of staff training that can happen over the next couple of months - with one definite training date being on Oct. 7th for Jan's branch staff meeting. In my research on this topic, I found the Health Howard service, which, if they're prepared to do Obama Care workshops, would be available to Allegany and Garrett counties' staff as well!

The second thing I took to heart was the notion of challenging assumptions. 

Step 1: Identify the assumption
Step 2: Challenge it by turning it into a testable hypothesis

This process seems to translate naturally into my staff development life. 

Step 1: Identify the assumed training need: "Staff member X needs to learn how to download eBooks onto the iPad." Oh yeah? How do you know? LOL 
Step 2: Turn the training need into a testable hypothesis: "I predict that Staff Member X is unsuccessful at downloading an OverDrive eBook onto an iPad."

I obviously need training myself on how to write better hypotheses. 

Then, once I have my testable hypothesis, I run a small, tight experiment. In this case, I would go to Staff Member X and ask them to show me how to download an OverDrive eBook onto an iPad. Ideally, I would have some kind of rubric to keep track of which steps in the process were adequately achieved and which ones were not.

I am actually going to try attempt to test this hypothesis with some eReader training that WCFL has asked my help with today (July 11th) and on the 17th. I'll write a follow-up post to review what happens.

So, for those of you who went to ALA, what will you do differently now that you know what you know?

Monday, July 8, 2013

Improv Fundamentals

Presented by Second City in Chicago at the American Library Association's annual conference.

The biggest take always I got from this program were more exercises to do with groups to illustrate communication and creativity processes, and also ways to use exercises when just interacting one on one with folks. 

Before I go into the different exercises we did, I want to share some really important verbiage they shared that really resonated with me. 

1. When working/talking with a colleagues whose expertise is identifying weaknesses and problem areas and/or they are great at identifying the reasons why an idea might not succeed, instead of becoming frustrated with them, thank them for their gift of insight and acknowledge that you want to hear those insights (because you do. Fault-finding is important!) and that you want to make sure they're heard at the most opportune time so that you can easily capitalize on them.  Tell them that now isn't the best time but that we will need other those insights in the afternoon or tomorrow or whenever the best time might be.

2. To keep these aforementioned talented folks engaged - especially when doing group work like brainstorming - ask them to facilitate the exercise or be the scribe. So, instead of them not participating at all because they're more focused on the dark spots, tell them that you need them to facilitate the group's current exercise. This is great for two reasons: they're doing an important and valuable task and the group is getting the results they need at the time. 

3. Get into the habit of saying, "yes, and..." To build upon ideas rather than shutting them down. For example, let's say I suggest doing one on one technology appointments with me and library staff to help staff learn a bit more about whichever technologies interest them or those with which they are having the most difficulty. Then let's say you think it's a dumb idea and that it'll never work because we tried it before...staff won't sign's a waste of time...whatever the reason, but with the "Yes and" technique, you squash those less constructive sentiments and say, "yes, and we could have it at the Oakland library!" Or, "yes, and we could include databases in those one on ones!" or, "yes, and we could make them worth one CEU for folks who need CEUs!"

And from there we work together to develop the idea and together with a more fun and positive attitude we might come to the conclusion that, 1) this is going to be great! Or 2) this needs more work but has potential, or 3) this is not actually the best way to fulfill the learning need. So, sure, it might take longer to get the the, "this is a crappy idea" but it allows the idea generator to reach that conclusion on her own which is more powerful anyway, and it also provides equal opportunity to get to the, "wow, this is a great idea!"  Win win for both parties.  

The Exercises

"Red ball, thank you."
This is a whole group exercise that brings awareness to the communication pitfalls we all cause and are victims of each and every day. 
Have the group stand in a circle. The lead facilitator holds up an imaginary ball in one hand and says, "In my hand I have a red ball and it will forever be red and it will always stay this shape and size. Before I throw my red ball to someone I have to make eye contact and say Red Ball. The recipient has to acknowledge the red ball by saying in response, Red Ball, thank you. Then that person makes eye contact with someone and repeats the process."
This goes on for a few minutes until the group gets the hang of it. Then the facilitator pauses the group and asks to see the red ball. Then he/she introduces a green ball in the exact same way they introduced the red ball and the game begins again but with two imaginary balls going throughout the circle. The facilitator keeps adding more and more imaginary items (yellow ball; polka dotted blue ball, etc) until it's pretty clear that the group has dropped some balls. At that point, the facilitator pauses the group and asks to see all of the imaginary objects. Chances are all items won't be accounted for. Then the facilitator debriefs the exercise and calls attention to what went wrong. Then we start all over again but then we add even crazier objects like a rabid squirrel, a crying baby, a freshly baked pie, a card catalog from 1972... You get the idea. Ideally, the 3rd round should end with all objects accounted for because participants (especially those in the sender role) will be more diligent about getting confirmation from the person who's on the receiving end of the item before they actually toss/pass the item to them. 

"Thank you"
This is a pair (1:1) exercise where each participant takes turns having a typical conversation about any topic they wish but before each turn the participants must say, "Thank you," before saying their next sentence. For example:

Julie: Hey, how was the ALA conference?
Carrie: Thank you. It was great. I attended a lot of really great sessions. How about you?
Julie: Thank you. I went to several really great sessions. I think the TLC program was the best though.
Carrie: Thank you. I wanted to go to that one but I had a different one that I really had to attend instead. 
Julie: Thank you. So, which one did you attend instead?

You get the idea. The notion is to slow down your conversation and always start on a positive and encouraging note because both of those components help to stimulate dialog. 

"Beginning with the end"
This is a pair (1:1) exercise where each participant takes turns having a typical conversation about any topic they wish but each participant has to start his/her first sentence with which ever word was their partner's last word. For example:

Julie: Hey, how was your fourth of July?
Carrie: July fourth was crazy hectic cause I'm trying to pack and move and start a new job but all in all I had a great time with friends and family.
Julie: Family get-togethers are always memorable times. 
Carrie: Times when we can eat good food and drink good drink and play a fun game or two! 
Julie: Two of my cousins even showed up yesterday to celebrate the holiday!

You get the idea. The notion here is all about communication as a team/partner effort. You want to set your partner up (and vice versa) to succeed by giving them a gift in the form of an easy-to-use last word. So you really have to think before you speak.

This is an exercise for a group of three with one person acting as the "Director" and the other two having a conversation about any topic they like. At anytime he or she wishes, the Director claps and whomever is speaking needs to revise what they just said. For example:

Julie: Hey Carrie, I'm really happy to hear about your new job.
Director: CLAP
Julie: Hey, Carrie, I'm really happy to hear about your new cat.
Carrie: Thanks. He's a handful but a lot of fun. We named him Max.
Director: CLAP
Carrie: We named him Polaris.
Director: CLAP
Carrie: We named him Wizard.
Julie: What a great name! What color is he?
Carrie: He's various shades of gray - ha ha how fitting for a librarian!
Director: CLAP
Carrie: How fitting for a fisky cat!

You get the idea. The idea behind this exercise is to practice thinking quickly on your feet and responding appropriately to changing demands. Think you know what that patron's excuse is going to be as they approach the circ desk with 15 kids books dripping in orange goo? Think again. Or better yet, don't think at all and just listen to them attentively without projecting your assumptions on to them.

The final project

So, our final project for the preconference was to get into groups of 7 and in 10 minutes we had to:

  • Think of a new invention and the problem it solves
  • Give it a name
  • Give it a catchphrase / tagline
  • Give it a theme song
  • Give it a celebrity endorser
  • Design a 30 second commercial that the group would perform for everyone on stage
This seems like an exercise that could be done at any staff meeting or during a staff development event to get staff thinking about new services, programs, or products their libraries could offer. What do you think about all this? How might you or your library take advantage of all the the world of improv has to offer us? I know I will be looking into additional improv resources and potential improv workshops that can be provided to staff in the western counties. 

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

ASCLA President's Program, Michael Margolis, storyteller

We should be in the streets celebrating the fact that information is free, that Google exists.  We have won the battle!  Celebrate and embrace that people can find information easily when they want it!

"Books are no more threatened by Kindle than stairs by elevators."

We want to tell stories that others can see themselves in.

News used to be objective, now what people seek is a point of view.  What is the library's voice - what is our point of view?

You don't need an elevator speech.  You need a few short sentences that will make the listener ask for more and be interested and curious

Storytelling reveals the invisible lines of connection.

"innovation" is the sexy way to talk about change

Why innovation fails
1. no common story (or competing storylines)
2. Change is framed as a judgement of the past
3. People can't find themselves in the story

Great ideas from around the country:
  • Boston is putting pop-up libraries in storefronts
  • Eureka fellow, Patrick Reamer, has an idea box.  It is a Rube Goldberg machine that kids can put their idea into about what they want the library to do - all the ideas go online and the kids will have a chance to vote on them.  Patrick has a grant to make the winning ideas happen.
  • It's all about imagination and seeing possibilities!

Add slides...

Our message and its success lie in our message expressing hope for the future.

Libraries in the Digital Era

Presenter: David Vinjamuri, marketing professor at NYU and author of several books

in 1450 when moveable type was invented the most popular pastime was attending public executions, jousting matches and a sport called shin-kicking

Reading is a past-time because of libraries.  This isn't flattery it is a challenge.

Libraries instill a love of reading.  Publishers don't understand this and they need to.

We are the most efficient organization in the country at getting access to the community for a remarkably low cost.

Self-publishing is taking off (#61-63 on the Amazon best-seller list are self-published) and libraries don't have access to the digital lending rights.

While the perception may be that libraries are less relevant, the data says the opposite.

Our job as librarians can be discovery of the next great read.

*Can we market books to parents at storytime?  Ask storytime parents/providers what they like to read and put up a display of appealing titles in childrens. Chick/hen lit or craft books in amongst the picture books*

Think of milk in the grocery story - we don't necessarily have to put the good stuff in the front - we can draw people past other good things by putting best-sellers in the back of the library

 David suggested a library best-seller list.  Make books popular.  Pick self-published titles that are reviewed in indieReads and make them best-sellers

We can stop classifying books as self-published and just look for good covers, good binding, well edited, formatted correctly etc.

Work with publishers to get free ARCs for reading groups

  • showcase books
  • be a good storyteller - collect stories
  • change the best-seller list at local bookstores
Slides to come...

Race to Relevance - Associations and relevance

Mary Byers - author of book by the same title

Can MLA articulate the value proposition of membership in two sentences or less?

If you have to drive longer than the meeting lasts... The time famine is more important to be considerate of than even finances.

How can we leverage content from annual conference across the year?
Julie Z is doing this by bringing MLA programs to the regional that are already built.  Other divisions can do this as well.  Content development and curation are important roles for the organization.

Tape/video presentations and develop that content into web or magazine content.

Instead of having committees, have a strike team - it is their job to problem solve and dissolve.

If younger members (of boards) are leery of a three year commitment, offer a one year term renewable three times.

Email doesn't work for younger members.  Text them. 

Millenials expect:
Free Internet at conferences
Younger speakers so that the members can see themselves in leadership
Convene a think-tank of young members and be willing to implement what they suggest.
Conferences may need to change a bit
Shorter programs

MLA has room to play because we are I a position of strength

Electronic banking

She gave a sample of an organization with a budget of 4 million dollars
    4.1% goes to technology
    4.2% to meals
    4.4% to printing
If your organization spends less than 8% on technology, change that!

What does MLA spend on technology?  I'd love to see a pie chart of our spending.

Rename nominations "leadership development"
Who will we tap for leadership over the next five years, we should know the answer to that.  It shouldn't be who says yes or whose turn it is.

Consider a virtual assistant.  We need someone, preferably on staff, to do social media and beagle to edit video and handle constant contact etc.

Know who your members are and what they have in common with one another.  Kow who is paying the bills and therefor who the majority of your services should be directed to.  Survey the members - years in the profession, role in the organization, whether they pay their own way or not

Consider that dues may be too low.  Those with more skin in the game are more invested in the organization's success.

Speed = suspicion

If it is worth doing, do it slowly and well and let everyone participate and be part of it.

*division/revision ands strategic planning, online meetings and information sessions to gather information.*

Where is our time and money directed?  How many people are those things touching?

Make to-don't lists as well as to-do lists

What isn't helping our members work
   Less stressfully
   More productively
   More profitably

Chapter Relations I

Chapter Relations I

Wonder if this meeting would be more effective as a web meeting.  Attendance was sparse

256 programs recorded at ALA. free for attendees And a small charge for others

Barbara Stripling (incoming ALA president) Library Bill of Rights
Signed and ready to deliver by legislative day in May.  This will be kicked off in July but she is hoping that school media centers will sign it in October (great opportunity for public and school libraries to work together!). Good opportunity for snapshot day and for customer appreciation day on September 11.  Coordinate with MASL and DLDS. Barbara is reaching out to past emerging leaders and spectrum scholars to lead her initiative.  Print and mount on foam board

Don Wood (ALA Chapter Relations office) reported on student chapter interns who are working at ALA. learn more about this! 

Money smart week at your library. Is there a role for DLDS or MLA in this program?  Fall webinar is planned (I think). ACRL's incoming president is passionate about financial literacy.

Suggestions that sounded interesting:
State president doing a webinar for students in the evening (follow the model of Maureen And Barbara)
Quarterly webinar a with the president? Topics? TedEx combos, book group on Byers book?

Capwicz may be replaced

ALA is considering replacing their newsletter software and there is a possibility of a joint purchase. They use Inform now

There is a chapter survey that may include software information, contact Michael dowling for more info.  Results of this year's survey will be ready to share with the board post-September

Rodney Lipard NC is interested in the idea of sustaining membership for his association

Maureen Sullivan
  Will bring Rich Harwood to a chapter meeting to talks about her libraries building community program and help us make a plan for how this can play out on the local level  

From outputs to outcomes: measuring what matters

Moderator: Jay Turner, Georgia Public Library Service
Speaker: David Singleton, Director of Libraries, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library
Speaker: Denise Davis, Deputy Library Director, Sacramento Public Library, Central Library
Speaker: Jan Sanders, Director, Pasadena Public Library
Speaker: Keith Lance, Library Research Service

Libraries are facing crucial decisions about what kind of data can be used to best make the case for support and can accurately show what 21st century libraries actually do. This program will discuss the basics of data collection in terms of what we collect and why, what options for effective measurement are already being used, and how the information presented in the right way can positively show the library’s impact on the community.Join our panel of library leaders as they discuss their experience with specific programs in their communities. Pasadena Director Jan Sanders will lead Denise Davis, Deputy Director, Sacramento Public Library; David Singleton, Director of Libraries, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library; and Keith Curry Lance of RSL Research Group, Colorado in this important and useful discussion.

My notes on this session are as follows!
1. Denise Davis - Sacramento
  • they normalized their language on Evanced so that they could mine and analyze the data from their programs
  • Tell people about programs at the service desks -word of mouth is very powerful
  • OASIS computer training - what is this?
  • They take customer surveys using the company Counting Opinions (BCPL uses that company too)
2. Keith Lance - LJ Star Library Project
  • Looking to add e-circ, wireless and wifi access to the IMLS survey on which the star ratings are based.  We can talk to Susan Paznekas about that data if we want input but in the meantime, make sure you can measure that
  • Where are the ratings of libraries that don't have 3 stars?
  • Skip Auld used the low ranking of AACPL to help push for more funding for his system.  Smart!
3. David Singleton - Charlotte Mecklenburg
  • Three ways to communicate value
    • Output
    • Outcome
    • Personal Impact stories
  • Use Marketwise Community surveys to gather community data and make data driven decisions
  • "library's role in education is out-of-school learning space and life-long learning
  • Questions to ask:
    • What does success look like?
    • How does this success help tell the library story
  • Sample outcomes - 97% of caregivers attending preschool programs reported they are better prepared to help their children develop pre-reading skills
  • Online summer reading program is amazing!
    • 20 minutes of reading a day is proven to prevent summer slide so they are working to encourage and document 20 minutes of reading
    • library is positioned as a partner in academic success
    • adult participation jumped from 400 to 5,000 when they took it online
    • consistent programming between the age groups so that families can read together
    • Share your Story space available on the registration page and other spots along the way to gather stories
    • site includes recommendations, classes and events
    • $5 fine waiver card is one of their summer reading prizes
    • Staff have access to real-time stats so that they can track participation and get involved in the excitement 
    • They can report the minutes of reading, # of registrants and send reports to elementary schools
    • Results in real time help you tell a different story every time you go out
  • Worked with an elementary school and the UNC-Charlotte Urban Institute to match test scores from a Title One school with summer reading participation
    • 70% of students involved in summer reading maintained or improved
To-do oriented thoughts:
1. Circulate tablets that have apps, magazine, books that are all built around a subject - cooking for example
2. Go look at the LJ library ranking for MD libraries that do not make it into the published article, because we have fewer than 3 stars.  Perhaps like AACPL we can use that to our advantage locally
3. Summer reading planning starts in C-M in September.  Their early learning, childrens, teen, adult and life-long learning staff are all involved as well as folks from the branches.
4. Talk to C-M developer about getting their summer reading programming!

Good the bad and the ugly - training that works and sometimes doesn't

Good the bad and the ugly

Things I liked:
  • Richland Library in South Carolina, has an intranet for staff and their promises (to customers and each other) are on that homepage 
  • An interactive map with fun facts about each branch.
  • A glossary of terms on the staff intranet which are gathered from newer employees 
  •  They used Prezi to create an org chart/hierarchy with pictures of each employee in each department. (They use professional Prezi to keep it secure)
  • New employees training is called the main event.
    •  they have a passport shaped booklet that  you wear around your neck which contains a series of self-directed learning opportunities.  
    •  Lots of games are included in the process
    • "Does the way we present our content to new employees embody the philosophy we are trying to instill in them?
 On my to do list:
  • Prezi org chart for MLA!
 Pat Wagner is  a great speaker!  I didn't take many notes but I really appreciated everything she said - my greatest takeaway - Don't be predictable, refresh your knowledge

She recommended
Read DK Psychology (for adults)

Julie Zamostny also presented a segment of this program.  It was content from her and Bonnie Winters' staff/customer e-device training sessions.  It's sometimes the simple ideas that are brilliant, but there is no better way to create a learning culture in your organization than learning together with your users.  We don't have to be the experts 100% of the time, but we do need to be willing to learn 100% of the time.