Don’t Just Be Integral: Be Aligned – SLA Hot Topics Whitepaper

January 28, 2020

The special librarian’s path to success and sustainability includes applying your tools and skills in support of the top-level mission and goals—and adapting the library’s services and deliverables so you’re always aligned with what’s most important to senior leadership.

This SLA 2019 Hot Topics session sponsored by Lucidea focused on how special librarians can go beyond being integral to their clients’ daily workflow, and become (and remain) aligned with organizational imperatives. Moderator Jean O’Grady and our panelists discussed fundamental questions, such as:

  • Why is it important to be aligned with your organization’s mission?
  • What are the benefits and value of being aligned—to the organization, to the library, to the individual?
  • How can you speak the language of your organization’s leadership and why is that important?

Panelists Annette L. Demers (University of Windsor Paul Martin Law Library). Karen McQuillen (ETS), and Cindy Moon-Barna (CASE) covered topics such as prioritizing and delegating projects based on alignment, strategies for partnering with and leveraging other departments, and practicing alignment without guilt.

Attendees refreshed their understanding of the importance of being aligned with their organization’s mission, strategy and goals—and learned why skills for special librarians include seeing themselves differently, committing to continuous improvement, and prioritizing activities, services and products based on alignment.

This whitepaper presents information shared during the event, combined with additional valuable insights gained from panelist interviews conducted in preparation for the discussion.

Moderator Jean O’Grady, Director, Research and Knowledge, with DLA Piper, facilitated the discussion—adding perspectives drawn from her own distinguished career in law libraries.

We invite you to download a copy of the white paper from Lucidea’s Hot Topics Session, “Don’t Just Be Integral: Be Aligned”. Do you have any tips for librarians seeking to become aligned?  Please share them in the comments below; we’d love to hear them.


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