May you get what you wish for is a curse and for good reason. You say to yourself, "If I were in charge I would solve all these problems...no fines for patrons, more money for science fiction, and I would re-arrange how the whole library is laid out."
Since I have been in charge, I have been able to change many things with the result being increased usage from the public. I introduced public art, collection expenditure by circulation, programming to need, a strategic plan, new policies, re-aligned staff and space, over $100,000 in grant awards, over $100,000 in capital improvement projects provided by the city, and additional collection space.
The usage of my library has gone up dramatically. We were able to get a bond package together as a result of our success. Our bond passed by an overwhelming margin, allowing the library to grow, not just in our current facility, but also become a library system.
The next 18 months will be the most exciting in my career. We will build a new branch, expand the current branch, possibly buy land for a third site, or work with another division of the city to build a multi-generational site with a library in it.
In the next 10-15 years we may have 4 libraries as opposed to the one we have now. I have the opportunity to build a whole library system almost from scratch.
It is very scary, but so very exciting and awesome. It will be amazing to see what I can do with this place and this community.
We just had our first meeting designing the new library, plus we just hired a technology consultant that will create a floor plan for the expansion of the current facility. Less than a month after the bond passed, we already have hit the ground running. We even have the layout of how the new library will look and where it will go. Better yet, library staff, our Library Advisory Board, the High School Board, and the general public all took part in the decision-making. I will post about that experience separately.
Our bookmobile service will start in a month too. It is so exciting to see all these changes and to know that what you are doing as a manager is driving it. We will have the first branch library in our vicinity, we will double our library space, our staff, our collections, programming space, and computers. I am all a buzz with the possibilities. This was the reason I got into this business, to affect this type of change. I couldn't be more excited.