Internet Librarian – Crafting the User Center Library


Internet Librarian 2008: Crafting the User-Centered Library
Cliff Landis

Why do we want to provide Web 2.0 services to our users?  The planning approach often includes jumping through too many hoops, a committee approach that kills new ideas, it was best showed in a video called the Association Professionals Through the Ages that humorously demonstrates the way ideas are kililed through over-analysis.

Cliff says that instead of overplanning, we should try something new, assess it, and then reflect on the outcome.  Try things.  Be fast – if you can try, assess, and reflect within three months you can come back with some kind of data that will show if it needs changing or not.  Be patient – you’re not going to get something right on the first try.  It’s OK.  Do not over-plan.  We like to think of ever possibility, every eventuality, every possibly horrible thing that will happen.  Assess how well something has worked through measurements.  Write assessment into our plans.  Get your users’ feedback and use it.  Write a three-minute plan.  Who is coordinating?  What are we trying out?  When will it be completed?  and How will we know it is successful?  Think back to our most amazing user experiences – what made it amazing?  Emulate those experiences in our own libraries and work. 

We have done this a couple of times recently with self-check out, RFID and the patron blogs.  These projects has shown us it can worked. Let’s continue has this path when we look at other ideas.

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