Change, Adaptation, and that 33 Reasons Why We’re Important Article

Lots of bloggers have been posting about the article 33 Reasons Why Libraries and Librarians are Still Extremely Important. And that’s cool – it’s a great article, and I’d say that all librarians should digest it.

However, I’d also say that this article didn’t need to be written. Well, I’d say that if there weren’t some librarians doubting our continued existence, anyway (the article points to one such librarian). In my talks, I’ve had librarians, and I mean 20+ year career librarians, ask me if we’ll still exist in 10 years time. They also tend to be the librarians who have a hard time understanding the difference between an RSS feed and an email.

I don’t know – I guess I don’t get it. When I decided to become “a librarian,” the web was brand new (I graduated in 1994). Looking back, that was a time of tremendous change for libraries. And change hasn’t stopped yet – if anything, I’d say the rate of change has accelerated!

And so, in a way, I quickly learned that I needed to embrace change – in my job (IT/Webish management job), change is a given. And I can either react to change around me (hint – bad idea) or I can try to anticipate it, understand it, and figure out how it can work for me and my library (hint – good idea).

Dang – I’m rambling a little. Sorry! So what’s my point? I think my point is this – that article didn’t need to be written… if librarians were anticipating change, jumping off the cliff instead of running the other way … marketing – no, evangelizing – their reason for existence in the new digital society … going where the customers are … and adapting to the the concept of “change is a given.”