Title: Change Management for Library Technologists: A LITA Guide
Author: Courtney McAllister
Hardback: 978-1-5381-1868-9, $80; Paperback: 978-1-5381-1869-6, $37; eBook: 978-1-5381-1870-2, $35
Imprint: Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2019
“Technology has transformed how libraries, archives, and museums store and display their collections, engage with their users, and serve their communities. The pressure to implement new technologies is constant, but technology that isn’t truly useful to users, staff, and stakeholders can represent a huge investment of time and money that yields little reward. In order to make meaningful technology changes in our libraries, archives, and museums, we need a flexible toolkit that will help information professionals become change leaders, navigating the equally complex variables associated with system specs and human experience or perception. Change management incorporates these concerns into a comprehensive framework.
Change management principles form the foundation for this book’s approach to managing technology change. While change will inevitably elicit unexpected situations or complications, cultivating a change management repertoire can help information professionals better identify opportunities for valuable technology change, plan and execute those changes, assess the process, and translate the experience into enriched plans for the future. Whether you have been managing library systems for decades or are an MLIS student, this book is designed to introduce you to change management principles and practical skills that you can apply to your local organization’s needs.
Chapters on assessment, communication, and iterative change outline a wide range of skills that can facilitate changes like an ILS migration, makerspace launch, website re-design, or room reservation process overhaul. The condensed case studies integrated throughout the book demonstrate the breadth of technology changes taking place in the field and give first-hand accounts of triumphs and learning experiences. There is universal template that guarantees successful technology change. But a robust change management toolkit can cultivate organizational adaptability and responsiveness that empowers libraries, archives, and museums to make the most of current technology changes and positions them to embrace new ones.”
This is an incredibly useful book. For anyone who’s ever had to manage organizational change of any kind, it should be considered axiomatic that people will react in wildly different ways. This book addresses one of the missing issues in discussions of technological change in libraries, which is finding the most effective ways to manage the unpredictable yet universal human reactions to that change. Courtney McAllister does an excellent job describing not only how change affects people, but also what to do about it. If you manage people, you know that you must manage their full range of emotions, while also guiding them through the various stages of acceptance. This book should help library managers navigate individual and group reactions to technology change both in theoretical and practical ways.
— Andrew Weiss, Digital Services Librarian, California State University, Northridge
Courtney McAllister’s book, Change Management for Library Technologists: A LITA Guide is a practical, must-read for every librarian who is managing change. Her insights and possible solutions can help organizations struggling with change, whether its existing upgrading technology, implementing new technology or projects, or modernizing the library. Her book will help project managers understand how to manage change with staff as part of any change.
— Diana Silveira, Author of Library Technology Planning for Today and Tomorrow
Serving our communities in libraries requires continuous change and adaptation. Change Management for Library Technologists provides a road map for navigating the human side of creating change in libraries. Building buy in, communication, helping overcome resistance, it’s all in here. Whether you directly manage technology or not, this book gives you the tools to cultivate a culture of change.
— Lauren Comito, Neighborhood Library Supervisor at Brooklyn Public Library
Tom is originally from Brooklyn N.Y but has spent his entire professional career in South Carolina, most recently as Head of Reference Services at the College of Charleston. As part of the Against the Grain and Charleston Conference team, he serves as the associate editor of the print ATG as well as the co-editor of the webpage. Tom’s conference duties include coordinating the Penthouse Suite interviews as well as the conference poster sessions.
He received his MLS from the University of Buffalo, SUNY and a second master’s in public administration from the College of Charleston and the Univ. of South Carolina. His wife Carol and he live in downtown Charleston and she is an artist and a tour guide offering historic walking tours of the city.