Some of our members have been hard at work publishing articles in AALL Spectrum. Below are two articles that have recently been published in the September/October edition. Please give them a read and join us in congratulating the authors!
Emily Feltren, Director of AALL’s Government Relations Office, announces that registration for AALL’s free online training, Advocating for Information Policy Change on Capitol Hill,
(April 11 at 11:00 a.m. CDT), is now open. This training is designed to sharpen your advocacy communication skills and prepare you to take action on AALL’s hottest policy priorities, including passage of the FDLP Modernization Act (H.R. 5305) and the Access to Congressionally Mandated Reports Act (H.R. 4631).
Emily says: You’ll leave this bite-sized 30 minute session prepared to contact your member of Congress with a pro-law library message during AALL’s Virtual Lobby Day on April 12, all from the comfort of your desk. I hope you’ll join me!
Members of Congress are currently debating key information policy issues that could change how law libraries access, use, and preserve government and legal information.
Join AALL’s online advocacy training to learn how you can influence your members of Congress to modernize current laws to benefit law libraries and their users. The training will prepare you to take action during AALL’s Virtual Lobby Day on April 12, 2018.
(Hat tip to Anne McDonald for passing this along to the blog!)
The LLNE Membership Development Committee would like to recognize the following LLNE members who have won awards granted by AALL:
- AALL Spectrum Article of the Year: Pat Newcombe, Western New England University School of Law Library
- LexisNexis/John R. Johnson Memorial Scholarship: Alisha Hennen, Roger Williams University Law Library
- Marcia J. Koslov Scholarship: Jessica Lundgren, Maine Law & Legislative Reference Library
- AALL Annual Meeting Grant: Elaine Apostola, Maine Law & Legislative Reference Library
- AALL Annual Meeting Chapter Grant: T.K. Adkins, Boston University Fineman & Pappas Law Libraries
- LISP-SIS Kathy Garner Grant: Jessica Almeida, University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth School of Law Library
- SR-SIS Alan Holoch Memorial Grant: Joshua LaPorte, University of Connecticut School of Law Library
See more details on the awards at http://www.aallnet.org/mm/Member-Resources/AALLawards/2017AALLawardsbrochure.pdf
Raquel M. Ortiz & Jenna Fegreus
LLNE Membership Development Committee Co-Chairs
LLNE Summer get-together at AALL Austin
5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Monday July 17th
Cooper’s Old Time Pit Bar-B-Que
217 Congress Ave.
Austin, Texas 78701http://coopersbbqaustin.com/
By Anne McDonald and Emilie Benoit, Co-Chairs, LLNE Government Relations Committee
Massachusetts UELMA Bill
Thanks to the tireless advocacy of the UELMA in Massachusetts Subcommittee of the LLNE GRC, the UELMA bill is making its way through the Massachusetts legislature. H 812, sponsored by Rep. Carmine Gentile, was heard in the Joint Committee on the Judiciary on May 2, 2017. The UELMA Subcommittee will keep the LLNE membership apprised of further action on its web page, where it has added an updated UELMA in Massachusetts one-pager.
Why is UELMA important? As the above-mentioned fact sheet notes: “enactment of UELMA will put a set of principles in place if a body in the future decides to publish in only online form or designate their online materials for use of the public as official.” Updates will be posted on this page and on the LLNE blog when available. AALL also has a wealth UELMA resources on its Government Relations site, which is constantly being updated. It is important for LLNE members who reside in Massachusetts to contact their legislators at critical times, so please check the website from time to time and follow through.
AALL Virtual Lobby Day
AALL’s Government Relations Office Director Emily Feltren reports that the AALL’s Virtual Lobby Day on April 26 enjoyed very active participation by AALL members who sent a flurry of emails to their legislators in support of its top priorities. The most popular action alert was in support of the Institute of Museum and Library Services, followed by funding for the Legal Services Corporation and net neutrality.
If you were unable to participate in Lobby Day, there’s still time to act: visit AALL’s Action Center to learn more about these issues and to email your Members of Congress directly from the site.
AALL is focusing on these issues:
- Full funding for the Institute of Museum and Library Services, (IMLS)
- Full funding for the Legal Services Corporation
- Net Neutrality
- ECPA (Electronic Communication Privacy Act) Reform
- Keep Appointment authority for Register of Copyrights with the Librarian of Congress.
A word on the Copyright bill: The Register of Copyrights Selection and Accountability Act of 2017 (H.R. 1695/S 1010) which makes the Register of Copyrights subject to Presidential Appointment and Senate confirmation passed in the House on April 26th with bipartisan support and is now in the Senate Rules Committee. Emily Feltren stated in an email that this bill is deemed a compromise because it does not go as far as the CODE Act (HR 890) and keeps the Copyright Office within the Library of Congress. Nevertheless, AALL opposes the bill because it would have a detrimental effect on interactions between the Library of Congress and the Copyright Office.
The LLNE Government Relations Committee is providing this information to you to further its committee charge to keep you apprised of developments which may be of interest to you as an informed law librarian.
By Diane D’Angelo
LLNE was well represented on the list of AALL award winners for 2016 — even our organization won an award!
These awards are just one more reminder of how incredibly talented our members are. Building friendships and collaborating with these folks and many others like them is one of the great benefits of being an active member of LLNE.
Congratulations to the following LLNEers:
1.) Marian Gould Gallagher Distinguished Service Award: S. Blair Kauffman, Law Librarian and Professor of Law, Yale Law School
2.) Chapter Professional Development Award: LLNE — special thanks to Nicole Dyszlewski, LLNE Secretary and Research/Access Services Librarian at Roger Williams University School of Law Library & Alex Burnett, Associate Law Librarian at the Maine State Law & Legislative Reference Library
3.) Best Public Relations Tool Kit: The staff at Roger Williams University School of Law Library
Registration for the LLNE/ABLL Spring 2016 meeting is now open! The theme of the meeting is “Access to Government Information.” We will be spending the day discussing the role of law libraries and the government in providing access to this information, and why it is so critically important. Registration is $50 for LLNE members, and $40 for ABLL members.
Registration, the full schedule, and more is available at http://lawlibraryguides.neu.edu/LLNE2016
By Anne McDonald and Emilie Benoit
The 30 minute Online Advocacy Training will cover AALL’s legislative priorities, the challenges of this election year session and ways in which AALL members can make an impact.
The Virtual Lobby Day is an annual event where AALL members collaborate with the AALL GRO to prepare and send targeted messages concerning AALL’s top issues to each participant’s own members of Congress. There will be no in-person Lobby Day this year.
We hope you will join us!
The January 2016 issue of the AALL E-Newsletter announced the participants for this year’s AALL Leadership Academy.
The LLNE Executive Board is pleased to acknowledge the five LLNE members selected to participate in this year’s academy:
• Claire DeMarco
• Nicole Dyszlewski
• Cate Kellett
• Anna Lawless-Collins
• Anne Rajotte
AALL’s Leadership Academy is an opportunity for newer and aspiring members of the profession to develop and learn from experts and each other essential skills for effective leadership such as communication, collaboration, leadership versus management, and more.
Through a series of assessments, focused conversations, group activities, and networking opportunities, these aspiring newer members will develop these skills and add colleagues from around the nation to their expanding network of professional connections.
Congratulations to Anna, Anne, Cate, Claire, and Nicole! Watch this space and other LLNE communications media for a view into the leadership academy from our participating members.
Posted on behalf of Raquel Ortiz, Assistant Dean for Library and Information Services & Associate Professor of Law, Roger Williams University School of Law, Membership Development Chair of LLNE
By Anna Lawless-Collins
I was fortunate to attend the first AALL Business Skills clinic in Chicago this past October thanks to a grant from the LLNE Scholarship Committee. The curriculum promised programs on managerial finances, human resources, marketing and communication, performance measures, negotiation, and strategic planning. As a librarian working in collection development and technical services, these all seemed like useful areas to develop. While the human resources and strategic planning sessions were helpful, I’m going to focus on the other sessions, as I came away from those sessions with so much excitement.
Speaker: Angela Hickey, Levenfeld Pearlstein
Shift your perspective
The managerial finance session, while targeted at law firm librarians, was helpful in a general way for me as an academic librarian. While we don’t share the exact pressures and issues as firm librarians, we face many similar issues; and while deans and faculty are not speaking in terms of profit and loss, we do need to show our value as a library and an investment the school is making. The best part of this talk was learning to shift my thinking when communicating value. The speaker suggested that instead of presenting value in terms of what it does for the library, but in terms of what it does for the stakeholder you are presenting to. This is a hard shift to make, and I still find myself thinking in terms of how the library’s workflows would improve, but a helpful exercise is to present the issue without discussing how the library would benefit at all. Frame it entirely around how the stakeholder would benefit.
The speaker also discussed how to build an effective business case. Some suggestions included: 1) define the problem, 2) explain how it negatively affects the stakeholder, 3) provide a few solutions and recommend one, 4) include the resources you’ll need, how much it will cost, and the timeline you expect, 5) quantify the benefit to the stakeholder, and 6) be brief. She introduced us to the Brief Lab, which has resources to help you build your case. I’m looking forward to sitting down with these worksheets the next time I want to persuade stakeholders to my point of view.
Marketing and Communications
Speaker: Alycia Sutor, Akina
Selling your why
The Marketing and Communications session focused on selling yourself and communicating with those around you. The speaker provided tools and activities for us to help us think about how we market ourselves. One thing she discussed that struck home for me was “connecting what you do with your Great Big Why.” It’s so easy to get caught up in the day-to-day of just trying to stay on top of everything that we can forget why we’re here. When we remember why we’re doing what we do, it’s energizing and exciting, and it can make those around us feel that energy. My Great Big Why, on a very basic level, is helping people. That relates to my work in that if I help build and manage a really useful collection, I help patrons and library stakeholders and can help train really excellent lawyers. They, in turn, might make the world a better place. When I remember that’s why I’m here, I get excited about my job and trying to find new ways to bring value. The speaker also helped us come up with communication plans and a messaging toolkit to have more strategic communications. I’m looking forward to honing my own plan and having more effective communications as we go forward.
Some other quick takeaways from this session included thinking about your quick pitch and your answer to the “what’s new” question. When someone asks what you do, we often just name our titles, but that doesn’t actually tell many people anything useful. Instead, the speaker suggested the following framework: “I [verb] [this target market] to [solve this problem].” So, as the Collection Development Librarian, I might say, “I manage a dynamic collection for library patrons to ensure they have access to the best resources available.” She also suggested always having something exciting you can say when someone asks “what’s new.” I can usually talk about a database or service we recently added, or a new tool I’m really excited about. We also discussed communication and social styles and how to modify your own style to best communicate with those around you. This workshop provided some very interesting projects for me to work on in thinking about the best ways to communicate and lead within my organization – I was able to see what I do well, and the areas I need to work on in daily life. We concluded by thinking about those takeaways we need to work on, creating action items, and setting deadlines for ourselves. The challenge will be setting aside time to work on these important goals as we move back into the routines of our jobs.
Speaker: Bob Oaks, Latham & Watkins
Numbers plus narrative
The performance measures session was very interesting. We began by correcting a commonly misquoted quote. “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it,” is often attributed to W. Edward Deming; what he really said, though, was “It is wrong to suppose that if you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it – a costly myth.” This was a jumping off point to discuss what we currently measure, what we should be measuring, why we measure, and how we measure. When thinking about measurement, begin with why you are measuring something. Are you measuring defensively, to protect yourself? Or are you measuring offensively, to prove something? Then, think about the micro measures you are probably already handling. These include tangibles, like books and databases; finances; and services, like research services and outreach. Next, think about the macro measures you should be measuring, like how you are benefiting the organization, how you are adding value, and how you are making your stakeholder happy. Think about who you are measuring for – yourself, your stakeholder, and influencers on your stakeholder. This discussion brought home for me the shift in perspective that had been discussed in the finance and marketing sessions – present the information from the point of view of your stakeholder and your organization, not from the library’s perspective, and you may have a better time communicating it. The speaker suggested asking four basic questions: 1) what is important to your organizations mission? 2) who is your stakeholder? 3) what is important to your stakeholder? And 4) who are the “influencers” on your stakeholder? That will help you determine the information they need to see and the best format to present it in. The speaker suggested using impact of services as a measure – for example, measuring how much time and money the library saves the organization with efficient and cost-effective research.
One of the most interesting parts of this discussion was the idea of combining narrative with statistics. Anecdotes and narrative can help you put personal, relatable spins on your statistics. When used alone, either narrative or numbers may not be enough; when used well together, they can provide a well-rounded picture of what your library is doing to provide value to your organization. When presenting the information, have a few different lengths ready – the thirty second elevator speech or cover sheet, the five minute executive summary, and the full details in a report.
The talk concluded with some thoughts about what we should be measuring and what we shouldn’t bother measuring. The speaker suggested only measuring things if it helps you with your budget or your staffing. I think some of the measurements we do in addition to that help with our internal workflows, which could fall under staffing needs, but improving our efficiency in general is always helpful.
Speaker: Karen Cates, Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University
“Fair is for Girl Scouts”
I am always happy to get a refresher on negotiation. As I’m sure is true for many of us, my own preferred style is collaboration over conflict, yet my job requires that I work with vendors regularly to negotiate strong deals for the library. Being a good steward of the library’s resources while maintaining long-term working relationships with vendors is complex, so these workshops are always good to go through.
We talked about the planning that you should do before coming to the table, like defining your own position, your interest, and your BATNA (best alternative to a negotiated agreement), and trying to think of what these would be for the other side as well. The bargaining zone, or where the overlap between the parties’ bottom lines, is a useful area to consider as well. This all was very familiar from other negotiation classes I had taken, but the sitting down and planning it out part often gets lost in daily life.
We also talked about things like leaving the emotion out of negotiation, while remembering that it may help you if used strategically. Personally, if I’m emotional about a negotiation, using the emotion strategically is beyond me; the emotion starts driving and strategy goes out the window. It’s much easier if I can just leave it before coming to the table at all.
We also discussed reciprocal concessions over unilateral concessions. If one side keeps giving while the other side makes no concessions, the side that is giving will feel cheated and may stop cooperating; it is helpful to make reciprocal concessions where you can.
The speaker also reminded us several times that fair is for Girl Scouts, not negotiations. What you consider fair may not be fair to the other side; focusing on fairness also may decrease your credibility (the other side may think you can do better), shifts your focus away from your target, and indicates you aren’t interested in truly negotiation. Keeping this in mind while working with the bargaining zone can be difficult, especially when trying to maintain ongoing working relationships with the other side.
Another interesting point the speaker raised included thinking more from the other sides’ point of view, much like the other sessions at the conference. For example, think about what they are interested in beyond their position – is it power, achievement, a relationship? Money is part of it, but it often isn’t the entire thing. She pointed out that our initial impulse is often to hoard information, thinking that if we share information it will weaken our position; however, if we share information it can help us close the gap between the sides’ goals and provide humanity to the situation. We did two negotiation exercises during the session, which helped drive home the points she was making.
All the speakers helped me shift my perspective in presenting information to achieve my goals for myself and my organization. Whether it was presenting information about finance, my role in the organization, my library’s role in the organization, how we are helping the organization meet its goals, or negotiating with information, I saw how helpful it is to think from the point of view of those to whom I am presenting. That basic idea, one we know but so often forget, can be used in conjunction with the specific tools and skills we learned over the course of two jam-packed and productive days.