Here is a situation at the Fawville Public Library, where the staff has gone through two types of directors, which they defined one as an autocrat and the other as an abdicator. The first former director ruled with absolute authority for sixteen years, a substantially long enough period to make a mark. The next and most recent director, who only stayed for six months as part of the probationary period, proved to be a complete opposite and a total shut-in. He was far too timid for a man of his position and expressed an unusually high self-awareness, which he would come off as cold and standoffish. Now, with both of these extreme types gone, the staff of the Fawville Public Library have been provided a chance to sit in with the board of (three) trustees on the interview process.
The first step that is needed to be taken is defining what the library director is and how the individual in the position will be best utilized effectively for the needs of the community. From the past failures, the Fawville Public Library needs to observe library directors at other institutions, read job postings online to find the correct language, and possibly speak with individuals at local library association meetings. Here, the development of the job description will be made and the ideal library director will be defined. Qualities to look for primarily would include a Master’s Degree in Library Science from an ALA-accredited university and a minimum of five years of experience in a public library with at least three years spent in supervisory role. I would emphasize that it is crucial to communicate with staff on their experiences with their past two directors, what aspects they appreciated and what they found difficult to work...
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...in the beginning with an all-staff meeting followed by one-on-one meetings, so communication channels are open and nobody feels left out.
There will be a significant amount of research needed to be performed beforehand for both the staff and the board of trustees in order to determine what type of director they need. It would be ideal if one or two individuals would be able to get in contact with library employees and directors at other institutions as well as review descriptions online. The biggest hurdle will be the interview process and the background check because from the past incidents, it appears that the inexperienced board made their selection lightly and did not pursue a strong check into the candidate’s experience. Lastly, it must be made certain that the Fawville Public Library staff members are involved with the process from beginning to end.
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