Stay Up-to-Date on Free Continuing Education Opportunities for the Library Profession

WebJunction announced that they will begin posting a monthly listing of free continuing education opportunities for library staff. This is a fantastic resource that you will certainly want to bookmark!

From the home page on WebJunction, click Find Training on the main menu, then click View Monthly List of Free CE Events  in the drop-open menu or click here: http://www.webjunction.org/find-training/free-events.html

Thank you WebJunction for the awesomeness you bring to the library training and education realm, and thank you to Jamie Markus, Library Development Manager for the Wyoming State Library, for aggregating this list!

Why You Can’t Stop Rewarding Employees

Given that happy employees are good for the bottom line of any business or organization, employers must work to maintain and/or increase morale. However boosting morale in this economy is challenging. Before employees even enter the office doors they may be dealing with issues such as unemployed spouses, mounting debt, loss in value of their homes or the complete loss of a home, and increases in the costs of everything from health insurance to fast food. The good news is that even organizations on the tightest budgets can find small, effective ways to boost morale.

While gone are the days of expensive bonuses and gifts, employers will find that many times just saying thank you and we appreciate you is enough to keep employees motivated. A simple gesture such as supplying employees with thank you cards or vacation vouchers to give to other employees is an inexpensive and effective way to boost morale. In his book 1001 Ways to Reward Employees, Bob Nelson (1994) says, “Employees find personal recognition more motivational than money. Yet it is a rare manager who systematically makes the effort to thank employees for a job well done, let alone do something more innovative to recognize accomplishments.”

Employers can create low-cost rewards and recognition programs to show appreciation for employees as well as allowing employees to show appreciation to their peers. Rewards programs can range from informal expressions of gratitude to more formal celebrations complete with trophies and plaques. However when boosting morale one must consider what motivates the employees. Employees who work as stockbrokers for a bank are likely to have different motivations than employees who work as social workers for a non-profit organization.

Good leaders can improve morale despite obstacles by providing effective communication with employees and providing meaningful rewards and recognition.

We recently revised and expanded our Rewards & Recognition program at my library. Here’s what some of our staff had to say about the value of being recognized.

How are you rewarding and recognizing your employees in this economy?

Serving the 21st Century Patron

Next month I’ll be presenting in the free, online event Serving the 21st Centruy Patron hosted by WebJunction. Maurice Coleman and I will be talking about morale issues in libraries and how to improve morale. At a time when advocacy and customer service are paramount, morale can either make or break a library. I’m equally excited to hear the other presentations.

View the full 2-day conference schedule and register here:

http://www.webjunction.org/conferences/-/articles/content/106453434

Hope to see you there!

Shelf Check by Emily Lloyd

Finding Your Place in Your Organization

Yesterday during the Technology Essentials 2010: WebJunction Online Conference there was a session by Sandra Nelson about integrating your technology plan with your strategic plan. Home with a sick child, I enjoyed the conference via Twitter as tweets like this came in:

This tweet really stood out for me because defining the problem or what it is that we want is crucial, and I can’t agree with Sandra enough on the value of integrating anything that’s important to an organization into its strategic plan. The strategic plan is the North Star that guides an organization into the future. Not having a strategic plan is like sailing blindly into the night without any tools for navigation. You may end up in the Bahamas or you may end up in Antarctica. Your strategic plan determines your final destination and provides you with a map of how to get there.

My employer recently created a new strategic plan, and I was overjoyed to see the following listed as a strategic priority:

Once an organization has a strategic plan it’s important that each and every employee can find his or her place in the plan. This may seem like a small thing, but when employees know how they are contributing as an individual to the overall success of an organization, they feel ownership and pride in their jobs.

My place is clear, and I have this strategic outcome posted in my office. Why? Because this portion of the strategic plan is my North Star and it guides everything I do.
Strategic Outcome for Library Relating to My Job

Any time I find myself with too many projects and not enough time, I step back and make sure that the projects I am working on contribute to my strategic plan (taking ownership). All of my goals and outcomes for my job support this one part of the Library’s bigger plan.

Last fall we created a new Employee Learning & Development Curriculum. All of the training within the curriculum ties in to the strategic plan for the Library.

Employee Learning & Development Curriculum

Does your organization have a strategic plan? If so, have you identified your role in that plan? If your organization does not have a strategic plan, are there ways that you can ensure you are contributing to the overall success of the organization?

Building the Digital Branch for the 21st Century: Free Webinar

From BlogJunction:

Webinar: Building the Digital Branch for the 21st Century

A search for “digital branch” on your favorite search engine proves that David Lee King is one of those responsible for inserting the term into our library lexicon and into the job titles of some of today’s most innovative library leaders. He’s the author of the recently published edition of Library Technology Reports focusing on the topic and also the presenter of our next WebJunction webinar.

Join us on September 15 for Building the Digital Branch: Guidelines to Transform Your Website for the 21st Century, a webinar brought to you in special collaboration with WebJunction-Kansas and ALA TechSource.

David will present on the process his web team used at Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library (KS) to transform their outdated website into a 21st century digital branch. He’ll address the differences between a website and a digital branch, and describe the redesign process – everything from the introductory planning stages of overhauling their website to the process of actually “doing stuff” at the new digital branch.