1. Betsy Ann Harris March 28, 2016 @ 12:35 pm Reply

    I enjoyed reading your answers to the questions on meetings and I really wish I could give them to my principals! I am a public school librarian and I work at one school three days a week and at another school two days a week.This is new for me this school year and a real challenge. The biggest issue is the lack of communication I have with the principals. They both informed me that I would be kept in the loop with what was going on at school since meetings were held on days when I was at the other school. I have had no such information. I have been told that meetings have not been held so I am not missing anything. But I am still not informed about things that are happening at either school.
    I worked under a (now retired) principal who held regular monthly faculty meetings. She allowed time for socializing, recognized birthdays, recognized accomplishments by the faculty and staff as well as their family members (we celebrated weddings, births, graduations, scholarships, etc.), shared a variety of information about upcoming events and programs, permitted committee reports, allowed us to ask questions and answered them, made sure everyone had the same information, asked for our input on issues. She did all this in one 60 to 90 minute meeting once a month. These meetings helped me feel informed and part of a team. These meetings helped the entire faculty build commraderie and feel like we were being heard.

  2. Catherine Hakala-Ausperk March 28, 2016 @ 2:23 pm Reply

    Hopefully, the principals at your current schools will come to recognize that meetings mean more than just “news.” Maybe you could share the link to this blog with them? Best of luck.

  3. Tanya Underwood March 28, 2016 @ 2:24 pm Reply

    Thank you for the reminder of why I have staff meetings monthly. My team is important and I need to always remind myself of this. I get great ideas at our meetings.

    • Catherine Hakala-Ausperk April 2, 2016 @ 1:41 pm Reply

      I believe that, once people realize you really, really want to hear their ideas, they’re going to want to share them. Because, everyone has them! The best way to convince them you value ideas is to go ahead and try them. Allow people to get a couple colleagues together and pilot new concepts. The first best thing that can happen is that they work. The second best thing that can happen is they don’t work – and everyone learns it’s okay to try something, fail, learn and move on. Good luck!

  4. Isa March 29, 2016 @ 12:47 pm Reply

    I was transferred to another branch within our library system and I am finding a bit of resistance to my way of managing. One of the things that the previous manager did not do was hold sit down meetings. Not all staff meetings can or should be held as an impromptu meeting at the circ desk and in front of patrons. The staff have expressed some loyalty to the previous manager and I am going on almost four weeks at my new location on April 7th. What I noticed immediately upon my arrival to my current branch was that none of the full-time staff shelved the returned materials and full carts would await the part-time staff member assigned to work on any given day. At the previous branch that I managed for ten years I made it clear to all employees that it is bad customer service to not have the books on the shelves at all times but this ideal is lost to my current staff.
    How do I motivate the staff to follow my way of management style? During my first meeting I explained my management style, that I like to work as a team by demonstrating that I too can work the circulation desk, shelve materials and as part of a team and that they can depend on me for what they may need or want but that I also expect from all of them to do all tasks. And that we will have more sit down meetings as time allows. How do I continue this without sounding like a dictator or coming across as one?

    Thank you and I look forward to your reply.


  5. Catherine Hakala-Ausperk April 2, 2016 @ 1:45 pm Reply

    Why not have a follow up meeting and, after reiterating that you want to have meetings and share shelving, ask them to help you figure out HOW to do that. In other words, acknowledge that they know the “system” better than you and you need their input to figure out how to make your goals reachable. I love that you pitch in and do the work, too. Modeling the behavior you want to see is a great leadership trait. Another thing to consider is to rotate leadership of the meetings. Assign each team member one month in which they gather the agenda items, run the meeting and perhaps dedicate part of the meeting time to a learning event. They can read an article before hand and discuss it or talk about something that recently happened at the library – how it was handled well and maybe how it could be improved in the future? Also, I’d have food. 🙂 Give them time but stick to your values and vision. Maybe this year you’ll have meetings every other month and, by next year, you’ll be on track for every month. Good luck!

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