User Experience

Creating Joy

Last month, I ordered a giant photo print for my apartment and had it shipped to work. As soon as it arrived, my coworkers swarmed. “There’s a package on your desk. It has DINOSAURS!”

FullSizeRender(1)Photojojo always makes me smile. And while I love the photo print, the memory stuck in my mind is how excited my coworkers were. One moment in a long work day but enough joy to brighten a dreary day weeks later.

And was there a dinosaur? Absolutely.

Dinosaur figure

Sometimes it takes something a little unusual to bring about a smile: an interesting architectural detail, a fun display, or even something as simple as a new toy. How are you creating joy for your customers?

p.s. The new dinosaur is happily settled with my Photojojo Brachiosaurus at home. It’s a very happy bookshelf.

User Experience

#alamw14: Do “great” tech tools exist?

Special thanks to Stefanie Buck, Instructional Design/Ecampus Librarian at Oregon State University, and Mary Soucie, State Librarian at the North Dakota State Library, for the wonderful conversation.

A seemingly simple question during the LITA Instructional Technologies Discussion Group has torpedoed into a “big issue” in my mind. The question? What are your favorite tools?

My small group took a stab at this. Our answers were mostly, “I guess I use this. It works for this.” No glowing endorsements, no magic bullets. As I have continued to think about this question (and my blank response to the question), I have a long list of tools I enjoy using in my job and talking about with faculty, but I still cannot create a list of tools I love.

We do have good tech tools; I’m not sure we have great tools. Sure, some librarians and educators are able to use them extremely well (n.b. My step-by-step directions PDFs are amazing), but the tools themselves aren’t creating loyal followers.

Rather than list every tool we have used in a useful, usable, desirable way, my group sidetracked to come up with criteria for a great tech tool.

  • It needs to integrate well. With the LMS, with the website, with the LibGuides, wherever it needs to be to provide point-of-need service.
  • It needs to be scalable. No solution truly works unless it can be used at a production level.
  • It needs to be shareable. Librarians need to learn from each other. Let’s share templates, workshop outlines, use cases, videos. We’ll be better librarians and have more time and expertise as a result.

Do you have a favorite tech tool? What would you add to the list of criteria?

Communications & Marketing, In the Workplace, User Experience, Weekly Links

Lonely, Lonely Links

Long time, no links (on the blog). These guys would really like to be shared.

I keep watching this video. It’s worth the three minutes.

(Side note: Even my empathy comes with sandwiches. Jimmy John’s cures all.)

What should you stop doing? I bet it’s one of these things.

In not-shocking news for most librarians: Bosses say they want outside of the box thinking until it happens

How To Tell The Story Of Your Idea Using The ‘Value Proposition Hack.’ Does your idea add value? Should it matter? Who cares? This trick will make deep thinking much simpler.

Stop Thinking So Much Like a Damn Librarian. You are not your user. Learn to see through their eyes.

Eight Ways to Stay Calm in the Middle of Chaos. Don’t let a busy period at work destroy you. Librarianship is (almost never) not life or death. Step back from the panic button.