Friday, September 11, 2009

Keeping Your Head...

Today George and I presented "Keeping Your Head While Serving the Community" at the Association for Small and Rural Libraries Conference in Gatlinburg, TN. Play our slides if you'd like, though they may lose some context without the audio.

This conference has been a big boost for my spirits. I've been serving on the ARSL board since February as an ex-officio member from WebJunction, and even that didn't prepare me for this wonderful conference. I learned that Kansas librarians arrived by bus, having driven the 16 hours to Gatlinburg from their home state (I'm sure some of them traveled longer). Further, I have to say, Kansas really represented the social networking scene by being the biggest contributors to the #ARSL2009 hash tag! I forgot to add the tag most of the time I was there, so, that was sort of lame of me, but Go Kansas!

It was also really good for me to have the opportunity to present with George; an honor. I think it's fair to say that I was a little bit slammed with work-related things before this conference and so I didn't have the time to collaborate as much as I would have liked before the presentation. But I thought our content went together very well and I really enjoyed doing the presentation overall. If you by chance saw us, please tell me what you thought of our talk (a dose of my own "evaluation" medicine, so to speak ... so that I too can iterate!).

My favorite presentation of the day introduced me to Give Em the Pickle a customer service slogan from Mr. Farrell (of Farrell's restaurants -- it may look totally cheesy, but this guy is hilarous and has great advice for serving our patrons well). My favorite interactive session of the day was from the State Library of North Carolina on "getting your community back to work". I have more to say about that, but it will have to wait for another day...

Finally, I had amazing conversations with colleagues all weekend either working in small and rural libraries, or working in state libraries to support small and rural libraries. It has been too long since I've been out and about. Cindi Hickey, thank you for giving me the encouragement I needed about the presentation! I tell ya, it really helps me to remember why we do the things we do back at the office.

1 comment:

Gatlinburg said...

Gatlinburg TN is a great place to holf conferences with all of the available convention center space and hotels.