Crisis of Professional Identity or Challenge for Personal Development : My Story as a Reference and User Services Librarian

KRULIĆ GAČAN, Maja (2017) Crisis of Professional Identity or Challenge for Personal Development : My Story as a Reference and User Services Librarian. Paper presented at: IFLA WLIC 2017 – Wrocław, Poland – Libraries. Solidarity. Society. in Session 122 - Reference and Information Services.

Bookmark or cite this item: http://library.ifla.org/id/eprint/1638
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Language: English (Original)
Available under licence Creative Commons Attribution.

Abstract

Crisis of Professional Identity or Challenge for Personal Development : My Story as a Reference and User Services Librarian

The aim of this paper is to point out a gap between traditional concept of the reference and information services in current LIS education in Croatia with focus on collections, and everyday public libraries’ practice focusing on patrons. Six years ago, when I started to work as a young librarian at the Adult Department of the city and county Public library in Koprivnica, Croatia, I should have started to balance between traditional tasks of reference and user services to give quick, correct and relevant information and requests to make collections, information sources and my job itself attractive to various, traditional and non-traditional user groups. Because of wide range of information sources, as well as widespread public perception of the library as place only for lending books, I was obligated to promote reference and information services in high quality, creative and attractive way, regardless of the library limited staff, budget and space bounderies. I have had to acquire skills of event organizer, PR manager, graphic designer, photographer, copywriter, journalist, social media administrator, social worker, educator, literacy promoter as well. Some of promotional activities taking place inside and outside a library space are traditional (posters, leaflets, bookmarkers etc.) but there are also a lot of virtual promotions – using social networks, newsletters, e-mail, library website and especially a good communication with local and national media. I would like to conclude that all what seems as a crisis of professional identity I have turned into challenge for personal development and I enjoy it.

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