I’ve only been a librarian for a few months, but there’s a few interesting tidbits I’ve noticed that I did not know before, when I just a loyal library patron.
First of all, if you ever find yourself in a small library? I promise you that you are a blessing to the librarians present. Our library is very small so we see everyone who comes in and we get VERY EXCITED with every single patron. Even if you’re just there to use the computers or to print something…we are thrilled. Every person who walks through the door is a reason the small library stays open and so every patron is celebrated. If you ever find yourself in a small library? Know that your presence is celebrated.
Once I attended a documentary viewing at a small library and I was the only patron there. At the time, I thought they were probably annoyed at having to set everything up for just one person, but now I know: AT LEAST IT WAS ONE PERSON. Small libraries don’t always get big crowds at their programs and so – even if it’s just one person – they are thrilled. If you are ever the only person who shows up at a program? Do not worry, the librarians are thrilled that anyone came to their program…even if it’s just you!
When I go to my library I tend to pick out books off of the displays. Now that I’m in charge of those displays, I realize how much librarians love that! We work really hard on our displays and so when someone sees a book and pulls it off to check out, it’s like the best form of validation. I love it when people pull books off my displays! It means I did a good job selecting books!
Finally…we just love all check outs. Small libraries even more so. Because libraries as institutions don’t have any sort of financial measurement of transactions, one of the key metrics to show use is circulation numbers and so every book that gets checked out is one small indicator of the importance of the library.
If you want to support your library, find programs to attend, pull books off displays to check out, and check out as many materials as you want! Especially if you have a small library you can support, every one of these actions will be noticed and celebrated!