Which Side of the Bus are You On?

Just a thought from Jim Collins‘ book Good to Great. In that book, Jim writes this: “to build a successful organization and team you must get the right people on the bus.”

The “bus” is the company, the mission, the strategic plan. The “right people” are the ones that can do the work of the organization. The “wrong people” are the ones that don’t fit, that always cause problems, etc. Jim suggests “removing” those people from the bus, because they’re hindering the organization.

I was thinking about that bus metaphor awhile back. Besides managers, who are thinking about how to get the right people on the bus, who else should be thinking about that bus? Everyone should be.

There are at least five places you can be in relation to that ever-moving bus:

  • In front of the bus. Standing in front of a moving bus is generally NOT a good place to be. You’re going to get hurt. Get run over. There will be damage – to you, and maybe to the bus. These people didn’t plan, didn’t look at the roadmap of the organization, and now they’re standing in the way.
  • On the bus. This is the best place to be. That is, if you are a good fit for the organization, support where the organization is going, and can help get it there.
  • Behind the bus. Better than in front of the bus, but still not a good place to be. These people didn’t leave the organization, but also don’t like where it’s going. So they are being dragged along behind the bus. Maybe slowing the bus down, but not stopping it (because you can’t stop a moving bus).
  • Kicked off the bus. This is what Jim Collins talked about. These people didn’t fit in, and were asked to leave. Probably better to have not gotten on the bus in the first place, or maybe gotten off the bus when you noticed it was going somewhere you didn’t want to go.
  • Pushing the bus. OK. Sometimes, most staff realize the bus should be going somewhere, but the “driver” is snoozing at the wheel. Or driving the wrong way. Or driving too slow (that can be dangerous, right?). So these people are helping the bus along the best they can. There are probably better ways to get the bus moving (Get a new driver? Find a new bus? Wake the driver up? Call the dispatcher? Hmm…).

Where are you? On the bus? Behind the bus? Pushing the bus? Not interested in busses?

Bus photo by Gerard Stolk

What do you Want from your Facebook Page?

looking closer at Facebook PagesThinking a bit more about my last post on using Facebook ads to actively seek out new fans … Why try to get more fans in the first place?

Another way to ask that – What exactly do you want from a Facebook Page?

Here’s a list of 5 things libraries might want out of a Facebook Page. These five things are a happy convergence of stuff Facebook is good at, and stuff that libraries (and other organizations) might find useful, too. See what you think, and add to my list!

Five things a Facebook Page is good for:

  1. Visibility – the more we interact, the more we are “seen” in Facebook. Which means that more people see our posts about library stuff.
  2. Listening – we share, but we also listen to our customers. They say stuff about us on Facebook! Some good stuff, some bad stuff. It’s a place to answer questions, to field complaints, and to actively ask for input. For free.
  3. Advocacy – this one’s huge, and should be a constant. Share good stuff about the library, and point out when we see customers saying good stuff about us.
  4. Purposeful Engagement – why gather a crowd if you don’t ask them to do anything? We should be including Calls to Action in our Facebook Posts, on specific things we want our customers to actually do. That might mean Liking the page, or it might mean attending a movie at the library. We need to start asking … and then measuring results.
  5. Conversions – Doing that Purposeful Engagement thing in #4 can lead to “conversions.” What’s a conversion? Simply stated, a conversion in social media is when your ask turns into their action. For example, if you ask Facebook Page visitors to register for an event at the library (and supply a link to the registration form), and 20 people actually click the link and fill out the form, that equals 20 conversions. Conversions can be measured and improved upon. But the important point here – you WANT conversions. You want to drive your Facebook Page visitors and fans to actually DO something – to interact with and engage your library. Conversions provides a way to measure that interaction.

Those are my five things … What are yours?

Photo by Flood

New Presentation – Designing the Digital Branch – it’s everyone’s job!

Gina Millsap and I gave this presentation last week at the Texas Library Association’s annual conference (this year in Houston, TX). Great conference, fun people!

Especially check out the final part of this presentation – it will give you a little insight into how my library decides on strategy – through data-mapping and GIS market segmentation data. Really handy stuff.

Enjoy!

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Video, Youtube, and My Library

I’m still thinking about Youtube and videos, which I started with my post Poking Around in Youtube Insights. So my next couple of posts will talk as bit about YouTube and how to tweak your videos to make them more watchable.

For starters, here’s how many subscribers and video views my library’s Youtube account has received so far (since March 6, 2007):

  • 191 subscribers
  • 191,000+ video views total
What types of video do we generally create?
  • occasional video series (focusing on technology or special collections)
  • one-off videos for upcoming programs
  • videos for the annual report
  • interviews with authors and artists
  • an occasional book review

Looks like we are creating videos for marketing stuff, videos highlighting a collection or service, interviews with speakers … and an occasional book review. Makes sense – sounds like a library to me!

Current direction

Our current strategy for creating video is a pretty simple one. It’s “please make video, dump it to Youtube, and share on our website.” Can’t get simpler than that! And that has worked ok so far – some staff have really embraced that and make a lot of videos. Others use it when it makes sense. What’s this gotten us? We have a lot of videos up on Youtube that shows off our library, services, and staff. Not a a bad thing at all.

Our videos are generally watched, too:

  • most popular video 23,300+ views
  • third most pop video – patron created content!
  • our 15 most popular videos are parody, interviews, interesting stuff about our collections, and kids and teens-related content

Our current video-making tools:

  • video cameras – Three Flip cameras (too bad they stopped making these), a Canon GL2, a Sanyo Xacti, and a couple other video cameras.
  • Software – iMovie, Final Cut Pro, Windows Movie Maker.
  • Staff also use their own cameras/software…

Here’s what we plan to do in 2011:

  • We have two new video series in the works (one that I’ll be directly involved with)
  • I have started adding tags, contact info and urls to every post/video in youtube. I’m also making sure comments are answered.
  • Working on a fledgling video room for staff. Currently, we have a room, we have a Mac and a PC, and we have a green wall.
  • Starting in January, I’m buying some dedicated video mics, lights, and backdrops.
  • And, we have a goal to be more multimedia-focused…

That’s what we’re doing, anyway. What are your library’s plans for video in 2011?

man with video camera from Bigstock

Internet Librarian 2011, Day 3: Social Media Strategies & Goals

This was my session – here are my slides – enjoy! Look at the slides, and read this person’s notes, and you will get a good feel for the discussion.