CHICAGO— Collaboration involves a fusion of individual talents and skills through outreach and cooperation. And it is one of the key ingredients of a vibrant, successful library that is also relevant to the community it serves. But it doesn’t just happen magically, and it’s a challenge to kindle those original sparks of inspiration into a sustainable effort. Written by a team of librarians and community partners who themselves learned how to collaborate successfully, “Inspired Collaboration: Ideas for Discovering and Applying Your Potential,” published by ALA Editions, takes a fresh look at the essentials of how to nurture the best within ourselves and our colleagues in order to create lasting partnerships that will continue to thrive. Dorothy Stoltz, alongside contributors Susan M. Mitchell, Cen Campbell, Rolf Grafwallner, Kathleen Reif, and Stephanie Mareck Shauck, employs a breezy tone that encourages reflection and discovery while giving practical suggestions on how to plan for short-term gains and long-term results. Questions and points to ponder included at the end of each chapter will facilitate discussion and planning. Helping you harness creative thinking and channel it into everyday work, this book:
- discusses why collaboration is so important and provides numerous tips for cultivating it;
- examines what to do when things go wrong, including techniques for generating patience and perseverance to help produce positive results;
- offers new ways to plan and implement, featuring guidance on how to establish a core group;
- explores ways to prioritize by starting with clear goals;
- describes the fundamentals of engaging with fellow staff and the wider community; and
- highlights ideas to spark curiosity that benefit everyone.
Stoltz coordinates programming and outreach services at Carroll County (MD) Public Library. She spearheaded a successful early literacy training research study, which showed statistically significant increases in early literacy skills of children. With more than 30 years of experience in public libraries, she oversees teamwork, grant writing, programming, community outreach, early literacy training, peer coaching, and mobile services. She is coauthor of three previous books for ALA as well as the ALSC white paper “Media Mentorship in Libraries Serving Youth.” In 2011 she became a member of the PLA/ALSC Every Child Ready to Read Oversight Committee and served as chair for 2014/15.
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