A recent visit to a friend who manages a special library reminded me of some principles that seem to work well in moving information services outside the library walls and embedding them into customer teams and groups. They are:
1. Start with your friends
2. Lead with management contacts
Due to shortness of time, I’ll cover these one at a time in this and my next couple posts.
1. Start with your friends. By friends I really mean your best customers. Analyze who is using your services now. What groups do they represent? A particular R&D lab? A special project team from Marketing? Probably you’ll find an uneven distribution of customers, with a few groups using your services much more heavily than others. Get an org chart and look at the management of those groups. If you find a couple whose managers use your services themselves, and many of the staff do too, then you’ve identified groups that are probably going to be receptive to the idea that a strong relationship with a librarian can be a great benefit to their work, and well worth the time and resources they will need to invest in an embedded library service.
Next time: lead with management contacts!