"Are We Having Fun Yet? Energizing Staff Development"
This quick program talking reminded everyone to think like a kid! They gave ideas for lots of hands-on activities with defined time-limits. They also reminded us that everyone learns differently, so it's important to consider different learning styles. Slides for this session are at http://www.slideshare.net/eclasper1/are-we-having-fun-yet-engergizing-staff-development.
I attended two sessions on website design: one on using open source software like WordPress or Drupal, and one about how to do usability testing with patrons, to see how easy it is to use your website. Both of these will be useful for us in the next year or so when we start to look at redesigning our site.
"Reference Services in an Ever-Shrinking Print Environment"
These 3 speakers each offered a different perspective. The first speaker encouraged us to really examine how much use our reference materials are getting. In his library, 65% had NEVER checked out. They weeded some, started putting some on face-out displays, and put a great deal in the circulating collections, where patrons would find them. Since circulating, they have lost only 3 reference books, which is a much lower rate than the rest of the collection.
The second speaker spoke about going Dewey Free, and I didn't learn anything I hadn't already heard.
The third speaker works for Question Point, an online reference service where patrons can get chat reference help 24/7. The librarians at QP are answering questions from home with no print reference sources, only what they can find on the caller's home library website. In order to help them help our patrons, she recommended posting assistance on our website about preferred browsers, how to get a new PIN, etc.
I'll post more about some other fun sessions in separate posts.