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Seizing Opportunities

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Wow! This article from Strategy + Business, How to Seize the Opportunities When Megatrends Collide, has articulated what I like to do! “… tap into people’s natural curiosity about external factors, to broaden and deepen the resulting conversation; and to translate the general understanding of megatrends into a more practical framework that companies could use to seek opportunities and reduce risks.” For years Rebecca and I have talked and taught about the big picture and thinking strategically. Here’s an earlier post on the topic too!

More from the S+B article:

“The megatrends framework can help any private- or public-sector leader think more clearly about complex external trends, and help develop an ordered, prudent, and proactive strategy for facing them. Its basic building blocks are five historical patterns active in the world today that have left their mark on all aspects of the world’s economic and social fabric.

1. Demographic and social change: the combination of greater life expectancy, declining birthrates in many parts of the world, and unprecedented rates of human migration, accompanied by a gradual increase in the status of women and greater ethnic and social diversity within most countries.

2. Shifts in global economic power: in particular, the much-noted expansion of prosperity in emerging economies at faster rates than in the industrialized world, leading to momentous changes in consumption patterns and a rebalancing of international relations.

3. Rapid urbanization: the massive expansion of cities around the world, through a combination of migration and childbirth, with major implications for

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UofRochester's RCL's Re-envisions Services

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Thanks to Solomon Blaylock & Kathy Metz of University of Rochester’s River Campus Libraries for sharing RCL’s work in re-envisioning & re-engineering their service model and Patron Services. Here’s their presentation given at OLA 2015 SuperconferenceU of Rochester Service Model OLA2015 presentation, including their speaking notes with many details.For more information, including the Patron Services Service Model report, Kathy Metz (kmetz at library.rochester.edu) or Solomon Blaylock (sblaylock at library.rochester.edu). What a phenomenal job RCL has done in understanding student behaviours and designing their services to match these behaviours.

U of Rochester Service Model OLA2015 presentation:

 

Value = Where Data Meets Story!

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The 18th Internet Librarian kicked off this morning with inspiring and insightful keynote speaker Brendan Howley who gave the audience a lot to think about as they drive their own destinies. A well traveled, trained investigative journalist and digital content strategist, Howley had lots of great tips for libraries about storytelling to share their value in their communities. Here are some quick quotes: “Where data meets story is where value is.” “Libraries are in the business of growing communities around them.” “Design stories with the end in mind; people will trust you and continue to share the story.” “Share the why of the how of what you do.” “Community members want to co-create value.” “Values, what you stand for, are important and are the why of how you win the attention of your community.” “Libraries are in the cultural context business; they are i the business of giving away context.” “Libraries are pegged to the cultural vibrancy of communities.” “Libraries are the cultural triggers that activate networks; networks share values and bridge people, build relationships.”

Brendan recommended the book, A Pattern Language, for libraries planning physical changes but also for UX and web interface folks. He talked about iBeacons which he thinks libraries will take advantage of a lot in the near future to help build open media ecosystems! Trusted open media ecosystems made up of local community news rooms. Exciting to think about!

Continuous Innovation & Transformation

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Steve Denning

Steve Denning is a wonderful, prolific writer and speaker. I was just reading his recent piece, Capitalism’s Future is Already Here, a Harvard Business Review blog post. A good read. Below is the part I think we really need to pay attention to:

“The other economy—the Creative Economy—is an economy of continuous innovation and transformation. This is the economy of firms and entrepreneurs that are delivering to customers what they are coming to expect, namely, “better, faster, cheaper, smaller, lighter, more convenient, and more personalized.” The Creative Economy is still relatively small but it is growing rapidly and, when implemented well, is highly profitable. It is the economy of the future. It doesn’t have to be invented: it’s already under way. Its practices represent a paradigm shift in the strict sense laid down by Thomas Kuhn: it’s a different way of thinking, speaking, and acting in the world.

The shift from the Traditional Economy to the Creative Economy isn’t just a technical wrangle about economics or management theory. It’s a shift in what society demands of the managers of its most powerful institutions: from narrow definitions of their owners and decisions that serve their short-term interests, to broad acceptance of the responsibility that comes with power and leadership concerned with what is best for society. In the shift, we are learning that an argument about the proper activities of managers can be logical, can be strongly argued, can influence decades of

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Inspiration & Creative Making

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Creative Making brainstorming at U of T iSchool Oct 2014

Another wonderfully inspiring Creative Making symposium at the University of Toronto iSchool, including a tour of their Critical Making Lab! Last year our Creative Making event featured many practitioners from the US since it was a relatively new focus for Canadian libraries. Here were some comments from last year’s program. My epiphany that day was around the links between knowledge management and public libraries, something that had not occurred to me before. Sue Considene from Fayetteville PL talked about their FabLab and her concept of the library as a platform for all types of learning (an opinion I have long held too!). Their FabLab uses community experts to come in as a “maker or artist in residence”. This made me think of expertise location which is critical in any knowledge management program and that led me to think that public libraries really need to mine their communities for experts that might be willing to share/teach/help others create in our libraries! And also for partners to support the program in many different ways!

This year’s program featured a number of exciting makerspaces and programs in Canadian libraries. There were great presentations (thanks to all the fabulous speakers!) and discussions. Here are some of the insights from the attendees today:

* things to do when we get back: use fresh eyes to look at our existing space (one attendee had already identified a space to be repurposed!); start small with things

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Innovation Labs & Centers

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#converge@flySFO

Today’s Google Doodle reminded me that we’re now into the intensive fall conference and event season! A busy time as well all want to grab the latest thoughts, ideas and practices. Innovate, change or die seems to be the current philosophy. In Toronto, D&J in conjunction with the University of Toronto iSchool are hosting a Creative Making Sympsoium which is discuss makerspaces, idea and innovation labs as well as fablabs. In Monterey CA, we will be participating at Internet Librarian and the Digital Strategy Summit. At Internet Librarian, there is a whole day of sessions around the topics of innovation, makerspace & digital trends on Wed Oct 29th that Matt Hamilton will be moderating. And if you are travelling through San Francisco airport on the way to Internet Librarian, you need to check out their new innovation and collaboration space, #converge@flySFO which opened this past weekend!

“Adding a space for innovation and collaboration at an airport — especially an airport in a city where the mayor is focused on it being a hub for innovation — just made sense, said Doug Yakel, public information officer for SFO, noting that airport officials hope this space resonates with tech-savvy travelers and innovators who pass through.

The 850-square-foot space is free and equipped with tables, lounge-style chairs, power outlets, free Wi-Fi and a giant erasable white board with markers. #Converge@flySFO is located in the International Terminal — a location that allows travelers to get together without having to go through the

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No Strategy is Perfect!

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Rebecca and I deal a lot with strategy in our business and this article, Where are the Sinkholes in Your Strategy, from one of my favorites, Strategy + Business, really resonated with me. Here are some quotes, but do check out the entire article.

“My firm was once asked by a CEO to assess the strategy of his company, one of the world’s largest. He wanted to know if there were any holes that he and his board should address. I’ve always thought this showed great leadership and confidence. (Strategy is a lot like IQ for many people: to challenge their strategy is to question their intelligence.) It also revealed his keen awareness that no strategy is perfect.

We started by asking two questions:

1. What distinctive capabilities make the company better than any other at how it adds value to its individual businesses, and how those businesses meet their promises to customers?

2. Are changes happening in the company’s world that could render its distinctive capabilities obsolete or insufficient?”

Rebecca and I have written a lot about value and you can see most of our posts here. But the one thing we encourage our clients to think about is their impact on their clients’ clients — not those you see day to day, but the the clients of those people. It’s a great exercise as is scenario planning like question 2 above suggests. It means you have to be aware of your environment and spend some time looking at

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Transformation: Re-Envision & Change

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Just got an email from OpenText on enterprise information management (EIM) trends, and what we’ve all got in common. I particularly like what they have to say about digital transformation: re-envision the way you do things, get more value out of investments, use existing strategic assets in new ways, focus on how to drive change and drive that change from the top — takes leadership! Here it is in their words:

From OpenText

Build Your Knowledge, Build Your Strategy “Digital transformation is basically the use of technology to dramatically improve enterprise performance, and it’s a pretty hot topic right now in just about every corner of the world. Leaders in every industry are using digital advances (such as analytics, social media, mobility, and smart embedded devices) and improving the way they use traditional technologies (such as ERP) to change internal processes, customer experiences, and value propositions. Most industry executives remember how quickly digital technology upset the media and entertainment industry early in the first decade of the millennium, and they know they need to be ready for whatever is coming their way.

Many are now successfully transforming their organizations with digital technology. Here are some of their tips:

It’s not about having all the latest technology; it’s about what you can do with it. Re-envision the way you do things. The biggest digital transformation initiatives focus on a fresh look at customer relationships, operational processes, and business models. You might be able to get much more value out of

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Leading Change Management

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Another wonderful piece from Strategy + Business. ” The success rate of major change initiatives is only 54 percent.” The piece includes a great short video about why this rate is so slow. Check it out. Here are the top 10 principals for leading change management:

 

1. Lead with the culture.

2. Start at the top.

3. Involve every layer.

4. Make the rational and emotional case together.

5. Act your way into new thinking.

6. Engage, engage, engage.

7. Lead outside the lines. Includes: pride builders, trusted nodes, change or culture ambassadors

8. Leverage formal solutions.

9. Leverage informal solutions.

10. Assess and adapt.

“These 10 guiding principles offer a powerful template for leaders committed to effecting sustained transformational change. The work required can be arduous and exacting. But the need for major change initiatives is only going to become more urgent. It behooves us all to get it right. ” You’ll get lots more out of the full article!

 

Driving Change for Community Impact

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The one day summit during the 2014 Canadian Library Association Conference, Driving Change for Community Impact, looked at exciting new ways libraries are developing solid strategies for engaging their communities, creating innovative programs and spaces, improving services and efficiencies, getting closer to and supporting their communities, and illustrating their value to stakeholders. It started with several case studies:

Makerspace at Edmonton Public Library by Pam Ryan, Director, Collections & Technology Eliminating services in order to renew at the University of New South Wales (Sydney Australia) by University Librarian Andrew Wells Implementing a customer service program at Markham Public Library by Moe Hosseini-Ara, Director of Culture, City of Markham.

Rebecca Jones, of Dysart & Jones, and Rebecca Raven, CEO of Brampton Public Libraries then looked at flexible organizations and working structures using Galbraith’s star model. Attendees found the exercise useful!

Kim Silk, Data Librarian, Martin Prosperity Institute, Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto and Elisabeth Glass, Manager, Planning & Development, Toronto Public Library shared highlights of producing an economic study and the results of the recent one done by the Institute for the Toronto Public Library and the city council.

Dave Pollard, Director, Group Pattern Language Project and associate Alexa Pitoulis directed skits using volunteers from the audience who read scripts illustrating meeting and conversation scenarios. Attendees then discussed the situations and possible ways of improving the outcomes using facilitation cards developed by Dave’s group. Two lucky audience members received a deck

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