Achieving a 2.0 Organization

A good session by Meredith Farkas. Her slides and links are here.

Sarah Houghton-Jan has great notes from this session here.

More notes here.

She opened with an intreaguing question: Why do so many 2.0 projects fail?

And she had some answers:
There is a pressure to do something cool because others are doing it.
We want to try new things.
(see the slides)

Before we begin to use social media we need to think about some things:

  • We should take our library culture into account (how open are we to change?)
  • We should strive to be useful in the 2.0 spaces we inhabit (don’t be frivolous or vacant)
  • Realize that this stuff takes time and maintenance (free as in kittens not free as in beer)
  • Don’t have one person doing everything (they will leave or get hit by a bus)
  • Asking staff to do things without taking other things away
  • When the excitement dies down social media can seem like a drudge

There is a huge graveyard of library related social media out there just languishing. That makes the library look really bad.

Social media initiatives need to be planned to continue after the lead person is gone.

Why does social media fail?

  • Not seen as furthering the library mission by administration and staff
  • Treated as someone’s pet project
  • Not planned for strategically like other technologies
  • Less motivated to contribute after the newness
  • Staff don’t have time

Libraries need a 2.0 state of mind

  • Work to meet user needs
  • Trust our users
  • Get rid of the culture of perfect
  • Aware of emerging technologies and opportunities
  • Look outside the library for inspiration
  • Humanize the library
  • Know your users
    • Stats are great but local populations are unique
    • Do  population surveys
  • Encourage staff to learn and play
    • Allow them to read and network at work
  • Question everything
  • Integrate 2.0 techniques into the “master plan”
    • Use them to further the mission and goals of the library
  • Treat technologies as tools
    • What do patrons/staff need?
    • What can solve those problems
  • Improve communication with users
  • Make services more visible
  • Improve internal knowledge sharing
  • Develop a risk-tolerant culture
    • Perpetual Beta
      • Provide something –> Get feedback –> Make changes –> Get feedback (etc etc etc)

Good ideas can come from anywhere and libraries should nurture the talent within our organization.

We can nurture talent by:

  • Recognizing any success/awards they receive
  • Allow time for creative endeavors
  • Create  new jobs or reshuffle current positions

At the end we need to assess, assess, assess everything.

I got a lot out of this session. At the end of this session I was happy to be in the position I am in. I realize that my library is moving in the direction of a 2.0 organization and we are doing a lot of the things that she recommends.

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