B201: Librarian as Consultant: New Skills & Mindset for the 21st Century

Track B: (International Ballroom East) —  Enterprise: Tools, Tech & New Roles – Tuesday 24 October 
10:30 – 11:15

Remember when you were in school and asked a question, and the teacher said, “Look it up”? Now, thanks to the overwhelming availability of online research resources—free and premium— that is what your customers are doing: looking things up themselves. So how do librarians remain vital in this self-service world? This presentation explores the ways in which 21st-century librarians must reinvent themselves, from providing quick, transactional answers to developing deep, ongoing partnerships with their customers. As trusted consultants, librarians combine research and relationship-building expertise to shape and develop their customers’ projects from inception to completion, and do not simply react to requests for specific information. Using the “relationship pyramid” as a model, the presentation will use case studies to illustrate how corporate librarians can remain essential to their organizations by developing nontraditional librarian skills—and an entirely new mindset for their work.

Presented by: Paul Barrows