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Creating change without chaos: Preparing libraries for the 21st century

Corrall, Sheila (1997) Creating change without chaos: Preparing libraries for the 21st century. In: Towards a Worldwide Library: A Ten Year Forecast, 23 September 1996 - 26 September 1996, Essen, Germany.

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Library planning and management must change significantly if services are to survive and thrive in the future. Current issues and pressures present complex challenges for managers, including the difficulties of coping with the economic and electronic imperatives, and judging the pace of change. We need a strategic management framework to transform our visionary dreams into concrete actions. This means thinking strategically, involving stakeholders, and planning with partners to develop services tailored to customer priorities. At a practical level one of the hardest tasks is to manage time and priorities, to strike the right balance between maintaining existing service to an acceptable standard and working on improvements for the future. The world of business offers models, tool and techniques which can usefully be adopted and adapted by library managers. Strategic planning and total quality management require a long-term commitment to getting things right, but it is also important to find ways of showing quick visible results to impress paymasters and motivate staff. The focus of staff training will shift from specifying and testing job-related skills and competencies to developing capabilities and managing talent. Organizational structures will follow some general trends, but must be designed to suit individual institutions at their particular stage of development. Structures need to be fit for their purpose and fluid to enable progress. Communication is the key to success in the change process and must be managed actively. Effective library managers will be leaders with vision, people who are flexible and listen to the views of others, but who are also decisive and prepared to take responsibility for change.


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Corrall, Sheilascorrall@pitt.eduSCORRALL
Date: 1997
Date Type: Publication
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Journal or Publication Title: 19th International Essen Symposium
Volume: 21
Publisher: Universit├Ątsbibliothek Essen
Place of Publication: Essen, Germany
Page Range: 66 - 77
Event Title: Towards a Worldwide Library: A Ten Year Forecast
Event Dates: 23 September 1996 - 26 September 1996
Event Type: Conference
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Information Sciences > Library and Information Science
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Academic, libraries, Change, management, Operational, plans, Organizational, structures, Strategic, planning, Staff, training
ISBN: 3-922602-22-3
ISSN: 0931-7503
EditorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Official URL:
Date Deposited: 18 May 2015 15:28
Last Modified: 31 Jul 2020 19:09


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