Leading libraries by creating a service culture

For Immediate Release
Mon, 05/11/2015


Rob Christopher

Marketing Coordinator

ALA Publishing

American Library Association



CHICAGO — Quality leadership is integral to the very future of the profession. And, as authors Wyoma vanDuinkerken and Wendi Arant Kaspar, persuasively demonstrate in their new book “Leading Libraries: How to Create a Service Culture,” published by ALA Editions, effective leadership is customer-focused and collaborative, fostering a service culture that invites the involvement of individuals in every part and at every level of the organization. Drawing from case studies as well as the literature of business and social sciences, the authors provide guidance on how to apply the values of service leadership to both public and academic libraries. Through the use of examples, exercises and tools for development, this book walks readers through the steps needed to create a sustainable, service-oriented model by:

  • explaining how a service culture reaches beyond the individual leader with positional authority and extends to all individuals;
  • showing ways to build rapport and trust within an organization, and how to balance encouragement with accountability;
  • detailing strategic thinking and planning methods that will lead to improvements in customer service, human resources, organizational development and training;
  • helping library leaders create a sustainable service culture through codifying their organization’s values, with advice on policies and procedures such as recruitment, performance evaluation, compensation and succession planning;
  • discussing the environment of change in libraries, showing how a library’s organizational culture is at the center of being responsive and staying relevant.

vanDuinkerken joined Texas A&M University in 2004 and received tenure in 2010. She is currently the director of the Joint Library Facility. She has written numerous articles and book chapters, served as coeditor-in-chief for the Journal of Academic Librarianship, and coauthored the ALA Editions book “The Challenge of Library Management: Leading with Emotional Engagement.” Kaspar joined Texas A&M University in 1996, received tenure in 2002, and was promoted to professor in 2011. She has written numerous articles and book chapters and has served as coeditor of Library Administration and Management and coeditor-in-chief of the Journal of Academic Librarianship.

ALA Store purchases fund advocacy, awareness and accreditation programs for library professionals worldwide. ALA Editions publishes resources used worldwide by tens of thousands of library and information professionals to improve programs, build on best practices, develop leadership, and for personal professional development. ALA authors and developers are leaders in their fields, and their content is published in a growing range of print and electronic formats. Contact ALA Editions at (800) 545-2433 ext. 5418 or editionsmarketing@ala.org.