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Special Interest Group Archive: Academic Directors 6/19/2018

These are the notes from meetings dating back to 2015.

Academic Library Director SIG June 19, 2018

The meeting was facilitated by Kari Mack, Director of Library Services, at SUNY Ulster. The focus of the meeting was a discussion about leadership and library culture. 

Discussion topics

Kari led the group through a discussion of the following:

LLAMA's Leadership and Management Competencies

  • Communication skills
  • Change management
  • Team building (personnel)
  • Collaboration and partnerships
  • Emotional intelligence
  • Problem solving
  • Evidence-based decision making
  • Conflict resolution (personnel)
  • Budget creation and presentation
  • Forward thinking
  • Critical thinking
  • Ethics
  • Project management
  • Marketing and advocacy
Definition of Change Management

"Leaders provide an environment open to innovation and collaboration by ensuring continuous two-way communication, flexibility, and willingness to learn from mistakes made, and by providing the training necessary to make the change happen." 

Kanter, R. M. (1999, summer). The enduring skills of change leaders. Leader to Leader (13), 16-17.

  • Change-ready workforce
  • Beta mindset
  • Stop/start/continue methodology
  • Innovative, competitive, and lean
  • Vision into practice

Questions to consider during the discussion:

  • What leadership techniques do you use to create dynamic change in your library?
  • How do you manage rapidly changing technologies?
  • What are you doing about changing expectations in the library?
  • How do you motivate the staff to affect change?
  • How do you recruit and retain a new generation of librarians?

The group discussed the following:

What is Leadership?

  • Setting the conditions for things to happen
  • Leadership styles
  • Leadership is also about making choices
  • Facilitating change
  • Which style for which circumstance is important

Constant two way communication with administration:

  • No surprises 
  • No assumptions
  • Re-education
  • Fitting the library into the campus strategic mission
  • Librarians need to be engaged with faculty - get out and work with faculty and administration
Recruiting and retaining librarians:
  • Diverse pool of candidates
  • Room for advancement within the library
  • Invest in staff (professional development) and the institution
Questions to consider:
How to be comfortable with uncertainty or how to embrace an environment where it is okay to move forward without knowing the end state.
How to get away from a "no" mindset and say "yes" in order to allow the staff to try new things. It's the management's job to say, "yes."
Position announcements: 
Important  to improve language for diversity in a job announcements.
Next SIG date: The group discussed the best times to meet for future meetings, which are mid-September, January, and June. 
Southeastern NY Library Resources Council
21 South Elting Corners Road | Highland, NY 12528
Phone: (845) 883-9065