Hiring and Supervising in Small Libraries

Pat Wagner
Wednesday, February 24, 2016 - 9:00am to 4:00pm

Workshop with Pat Wagner at Hortonville Public Library

9am-Noon: Recruiting, hiring and supervising employees in small communities

The secret to finding great employees in small communities is to become a talent scout. Can you judge the value of a potential employee without looking at credentials and experience? Can you find people willing to grow and learn? How flexible are you regarding job-sharing, internships, partnering with local colleges, and sharing employees with other organizations?

In a small enterprise, everyone needs to be able and willing to do everything. The boss empties the trash, and sometimes a beginner is plunged into a big project. Without a big team and layers of bureaucracy, small organizations are nimble, but also more likely to suffer shared personality disorders. The emotional intensity requires good-humored, mature personalities, who are willing to change and grow.

Noon-1pm: Lunch - Subway sandwiches, $5

1pm-4pm: Coaching in the workplace

Most workplace learning happens in the course of the day, during encounters with employees, co-workers, and supervisors. Instead of seeking out colleagues only to tell them they are doing something wrong, or to ask them a favor, why not use your time to coach: catch them doing it right, tell them what they are doing right, and reward them with attention and praise. Works better than a constant rain of criticism.


Pat Wagner has been a library consultant and trainer since 1978 and has worked for libraries and related institutions since 1978. She is a frequent speaker at state and national conferences as well as experienced in the day-to-day work of all kinds of libraries. Pat is known for her practical and good-humored programs. A graduate of Tremper High School in Kenosha and former residence of Milwaukee, she still simmers her brats in beer and and eats cheese on everything.



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