Two New Policies/Culture Shifts at PSC

I am very happy to introduce two new culture shifts at PSC.  I think the first will help introduce innovation, but also shift our culture to one that embraces experimentation.  The second will help staff better understand how space affects those in the library.  I don’t understand how a director or dean or library leader can lead a library without actually using it.  Here is part of the memo that I sent out to staff:

As you know, I am trying to push the culture of the library in new directions.  I am very excited to introduce two new shifts:

 

  1.  I would like us to shift some of our time.  Google and 3M have a long and successful policy of giving staff time each week to work on technology projects that excite and interest them.  To that end, please begin to take 2 hours per week (5% of your time) to explore and work on ideas of your own making.  If you are interested in reading more please see http://www.wired.com/techbiz/media/news/1998/01/9858 or http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/21/jobs/21pre.html.  This is time for you to work on and explore anything you want as long as it is somehow library related.  It is best if the time is spent on a sustained project.  You can and should feel free to work either on individual projects or collaborate with others.  The purpose is to move us into a culture that is okay with experimenting with new ideas and risking failure.  Really the sky is the limit.
  2. In order to better understand how our spaces influence and affect our students, I would like each one of us to spend some time each month working where the students work.  This could mean checking work email on the students’ computers, reading professional literature on the lounge furniture, or working on a project at a table.  The library also has two laptops which you can use to engage in work activities and see how wifi impacts our students.  Please respect peak times for our students and avoid taking computers and space away when we are at or near capacity.

 

Both of these are voluntary but strongly encouraged.  They are intentionally designed to be flexible but also remain vague.  Please feel free to ask me to clarify anything.

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6 Comments

Filed under Innovation, Spaces

6 responses to “Two New Policies/Culture Shifts at PSC

  1. Liz

    These are awesome ideas Tony.

  2. Leslie Cerkoney - Dominican MLIS Graduate & Library Advocate

    I know what you mean. I am currently using the students laptops to work on at the high school, because they are fixing my desktop. I actually much prefer the laptop, becuase it is portable and I am not confined to a certain area. Which as we all know in the library is a must – always moving and changing.

    I also, have been sitting in the same chairs that the students do…for the short term they are fine, but for the long term, one period or more, they are extremely uncomfortable. However, we are currently testing out new chairs for the students…which are much more comfortable and padded instead of just wood. I am just concerned about durability.

    So get in there with your students, partrons, or community and get to know another perspective. good for your mind and soul. Have fun with it and get toknow them on a more personal level. 🙂

  3. Leslie,
    Thanks for sharing. I think its great that you have this opportunity to learn ways to improve services for your patrons/students.

  4. This is great, I’ve mentioned the free/exploration idea a couple of times at my library only to be met with silence. Luckily I don’t give up that easily.

  5. Dan,
    That’s unfortunate that innovative gets met with silence, but I would encourage you to keep trying!

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