Developing Flexibility

baby with foot in mouth

As anyone who knows me knows, it is easy for me to put my foot in my mouth metaphorically, but flexibility comes from an openness to experience. I am learning that my employment is more about what I am “willing” to do than what I am “able” to do. Which is a very good thing, because a librarian must be able to sense the needs of individual patrons. Linking cause and effect, I have learned that my smile and greeting invite questions that patrons may feel insecure about asking. There is always the child who wants a specific book that he or she has been exposed to in school or in a peer setting. Then again, there is that octogenarian who simply has never used a computer, but wants to order something from Each has a specific need and I am there to patiently and completely help. Building trust is the first basis for successful librarianship. I want each patron to have a positive experience from a reliable institution. It is this “trust vs. mistrust” psychosocial theory promoted by E. Erikson (1902-1994) that convinces me that my interactions will create a strong belief that the world is a good place for both myself and my patron.  These initial interactions are critical to the development of a autonomous library user. There is no place in public service for mistrust. I trust my patrons to respect the library and its shared resources and my patrons trust me to deliver those resources to the best of my ability.

About admin

Avid reader with interest in literacy as an avenue for social equality and humanitarian public service. Librarians are at the forefront of the new information age, learning to use print and electronic resources with equal ease and teaching 21st century skills to learners of all ages.
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