Webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date March 21, 2012
Hosted by: Infopeople
Length: 1 hour

What is the use of a library if nobody comes? Or worse, what if they come but don’t come back?

Libraries offer a compelling set of resources and services to meet the needs of their communities. But old service models often focus on the needs of the library first, and the user second.

Retail establishments such as bookstores, coffee shops, information services, computing services, and purveyors of e-readers are all encroaching on the library’s core user base by replicating services traditionally associated with libraries. They really know what they’re doing, and we can, too!

Consumer research has shown repeatedly that understanding user needs and cultivating good customer relationships is key to the success of the modern organization. Creating a customer-focused library enables staff to know their users and meet their needs. A customer-focused library means more users, engaged staff, and a satisfying relationship with your community.

Presented by: Gretel Stock-Kupperman

Webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date November 18, 2015
Hosted by: WebJunction and the Association for Rural and Small Libraries
Length: 1 hour

The immortal Kurt Vonnegut said, "The America I love still exists at the front desks of our public libraries." In this webinar, you can discover at least three ways to shift your library from good enough to unexpectedly amazing, and to take your community's image of the public library to new heights. Locate your library's first impressions, displays, customer service, policies and more on the "Yes-O-Meter" and understand how to move from "No" or "Yes, but..." to a powerful culture of "Yes, and!" The insights you gain for shifting your library culture will invigorate the relationships between your staff and with your community.

Presented by: Sharon Morris and Kieran Hixon

webinar iconFormat: Webinar, original date March 5, 2020
Hosted by: WebJunction
Length: 1 hour

Every day, public libraries open their doors to people facing ongoing life challenges, such as poverty, mental health symptoms, substance abuse, or domestic violence. The library may be the only protective place they can turn to, the only place that can counter the debilitating negative factors that govern their lives. Join this webinar to explore the ways the library functions as a "protective factor" and to understand how the library, staff, and patrons exist within a community-wide context of safety. With consideration for how poverty, race, or other often stigmatized challenges impact the patron experience, learn practical and applicable ways to assess your library’s relationship with patrons, local law enforcement, social workers, and other organizations. Hear how the Sacramento Public Library learned through crisis to address staff and community trauma and to build resilience through more compassionate and inclusive policies and practices.

Presented by: Eric Lashley, Patrick Lloyd and Rivkah Sass

Self Paced CourseFormat: Self-paced Course
Developed by: LibraryU, a program of the Illinois State Library and the regional library systems
Length: 1 hour

No one enjoys having to deal with an angry patron, but with proper preparation, and by developing the specific set of skills required, you can minimize conflict, defuse patron anger and identify the underlying issues so that you can help find the best solution. This course is designed to help you improve your skills in dealing effectively with angry customers. It outlines a two-step method for responding to anger, by teaching the staff member to first deal with the patron's feelings, then deal with the person's problem. It includes practice with realistic patron encounters.

Course Design: updated by WebJunction

Webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date October 19, 2010
Hosted by: WebJunction
Length: 1 hour

Library staff can handle difficult patrons, resolve issues or problems quickly and efficiently and retain customer loyalty throughout. Join presenters Paul Signorelli, writer, trainer, and consultant with a strong focus on workplace learning and performance, and Maurice Coleman, Technical Trainer at Harford County Public Library, for this one hour webinar providing expert resources for working with a patron using common sense practices and techniques for bringing that customer back into the fold.

Presented by: Paul Signorelli and Maurice Coleman

Self Paced CourseFormat: Self-paced Course
Developed with: funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services
Length: 2 hours

Commitment to great customer service goes beyond “service with a smile.” It is a commitment to truly engage and communicate with patrons and to find ways to extend the experience above and beyond their expectations. Building on the success of the Darien Library, whose reputation is known internationally for providing “extreme customer service,” presenter Gretchen Caserotti will provide you with practical and actionable ideas that can help your library, whether small or large, commit to excellent customer service.

Course Design:

Based on a webinar originally presented by Gretchen Caserotti and designed by WebJunction

webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date February 21, 2018
Hosted by: WebJunction and the Association for Rural and Small Libraries
Length: 1 hour

Homelessness means having no predictable and safe place to sleep. Libraries in rural and small communities are often a source of information and daytime shelter for individuals facing homelessness or housing insecurity. In an already busy library with limited resources, staff may be challenged to respond to the needs of these patrons and to cope with compassion fatigue. This webinar will provide practical insights on providing services to people who don't have stable housing. Learn how to create an environment that feels welcoming, informative and supportive, including ideas for reducing policy barriers. Learn how to host conversations that explore public perceptions, help to debunk myths around homelessness, and strengthen community ties.

Presented by: Mallory Pillard and Sara Zettervall

webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date January 21, 2015
Hosted by: Nicolet Federated Library System
Length: 1 hour

Success in wowing people requires planning for the big picture and tiny details, considering all the senses, and considering the various reasons people visit or could visit the library--both online and in person--but all that requires that we look and listen before we act. Too often, we assume we know more than we do, and we skip the looking step. By taking time to observe and experience the library through patrons' eyes, we can dramatically improve the experiences our patrons encounter. Learn simple, fun, and effective tools and low-budget tips that will improve the patron experience--for all ages, for big and small libraries, and for all budgets. No additional funds required.

Presented by: Erica Reynolds

webinar icon

Format: Webinar, original date February 5, 2021
Hosted by: WebJunction
Length: 1 hour

Social wellbeing, individuals living the good life in a thriving community, is something public libraries can influence! Join these rural library directors for a tour of the most popular tools for helping libraries improve social wellbeing in their communities created from the Rural Library Service & Social Wellbeing Project research. Learn from library directors who leverage all available resources to create feelings of delight, power, cultural identity, and belonging for community residents with outstanding results. Participants will leave understanding key actions libraries can take to improve social wellbeing outcomes in their own communities, both immediately, and over the long haul.

Presented by: Emilie Braunel, Jerianne Davis, Susan Green, Richard Styre, and moderated by Margo Gustina

Webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date January 11, 2017
Hosted by: WebJunction
Length: 1 hour

In turbulent times, many Americans turn to their libraries. While this is a true affirmation of the value our country places on its libraries, it increases the responsibility for library staff to meet the public with the best customer service. During times of community turmoil, it is an extra challenge to convey patience, good humor, an accurate knowledge of your collections and services, and a willingness to serve. Learn how to ramp up your skills to maintain a safe, welcoming environment where everyone can visit, work, and play without feeling uncomfortable. Keep calm, confident and capable of guiding your community through difficult times.

Presented by: Pat Wagner

webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date December 12, 2012
Hosted by: WebJunction and ALA's Learning Round Table
Length: 1 hour

Looking for some magic to improve customer service in your library? The Disney Institute on Quality Service has set high standards for creating a quality customer experience and their ideas can be applied at your library. Our panel of Colorado librarians attended the Disney Institute Quality Service preconference sponsored by ALA's LearnRT at the annual conference in Anaheim in 2012. Since then, they've been waving their magic wands to improve customer service in Colorado libraries and they'd like to share their discoveries with you. Learn how to define quality service, set a common purpose for all library staff, and better understand your customers. You'll walk away with ideas to make your library's customer service sparkle.

Presented by: Crystal Schimpf, Elena Rosenfeld, and Suzanne McGowan