After my first complete Computers in Libraries conference I’m asking myself: What did I learn?
Mobile needs to be a key element as we move forward. We need to think about mobile aspects and how our sites translate on to smaller screens. This is not new but was really driven home to me this week. A stat mentioned at the Monday morning keynote about how many low income and minorities only connect to the internet via mobile devices has really stuck with me. If we as a public library want to reach our public then we have to have a solid mobile presence.
Know your people. In order to get the things you want accomplished we need to establish relationships with just about everyone. When speaking of advocacy on Wednesday morning the speaker used a banking analogy: You can’t make a withdrawal without making some deposits. That analogy works just as well when trying to get things done. We can’t ask our staff to adopt a new technology or way of doing things and expect them to buy in if they don’t trust us. Establishing relationships early, maintaining those relationships and being helpful when they ask something of us will go a long way when it is time for us to ask something of them. Relationships take time and maintenance.
Be more willing to talk. I’m not a naturally outgoing person so I have a difficult time just walking up to someone I don’t know and striking up a conversation. I was lucky to meet some good people the first day (thank you Twitter) and enjoyed hanging out with them. Being willing to put myself out there and “work a room” is something I will work on.
I am very happy I was able to attend the conference and hope to go next year too. I’m still trying to write up my notes and get my head around all the things I learned. That’s going to take some time. I believe this experience has been very beneficial to me and (hopefully) my library.