Administration of the Small Public Library, 4th Edition

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What is our library's mission statement?

How do we serve our older customers better?

How do I justify the purchase of a new Internet workstation in my library?

How many times should I call the plumber each year?

These questions and more are discussed in the new edition of an old classic. Since the publication of its first edition in 1965, Administration of the Small Public Library has been a gold standard resource for setting up and managing cutting-edge small public library facilities. Completely revised and updated, this fourth edition continues that tradition with many more figures, case studies and sample policies, and new content on grant writing, program budgeting, hiring, and creative compensation.

Addressing every aspect of running a small library—from defining the community's characteristics and forming a board to planning a budget to networking with other libraries—this comprehensive reference will help you to:

  1. Embrace emerging technologies.
  2. Improve accountability by using the latest management techniques.
  3. Maintain funding by encouraging community involvement
  4. Adapt sample documents (including long-range plan, job descriptions, organizational charts, budget worksheets, policies, and construction plans) to your institution.

Designed to help those 80% of libraries classified as "small," this completely updated edition is packed with how-to information on how to effectively manage a thriving small public library.


    1 The Small Community: An Opportunity for the Librarian
      Characteristics of Small Communities
      Small Communities with Specialized Customer Bases
      The Changing Marketplace
      Marketing/Planning: The Keystone

    2 Library Governance
      The Library's Legal Basis
      Working with Local Officials
      The Permutations of a Library Board
      Strategies to Enhance Library Governance
      Taking the Long View

    3 Studying the Community and Developing a Plan
      The Planning Team
      Developing Mission, Vision, Roles, and Service Responses
      Reconsidering Service from a Marketing Perspective
      Conducting a Marketing Audit
      The Study Is Over . . . Now What?
      Creating Goals and Objectives

    4 From Objectives to Customer Service through Marketing
      What Are the Library's Products?
      Price: Determining the Cost of Products
      Setting Priorities
      Levels of Service
      Public Relations as a Service Function
      Staff Attitudes toward Service

    5 Policies
      Changes in Policy
      Policy Making
      Establishing Specific Policies

    6 Finance
      Sources of Local Income
      State and Federal Aid
      Supplementary Funding
      Preparing the Budget

    7 Personnel Administration
      Personnel Policies
      Personnel Functions
      Levels of Staff
      Working Conditions
      Continuing Education for Competence and Advancement

    8 Operations in Support of the Library's Products
      Collection Management
      Developing the Collection
      Preparing Materials for Use
      Collection Control

    9 Library Systems and Cooperative Arrangements
      Library Systems
      State and National Networks
      Cooperation with Other Libraries and Agencies

    10 Outlets for Library Service in the New Millennium
      Electronic Access
      The Library Building
      Steps to Improved Library Facilities
      Deciding to Build or Remodel
      Energy Considerations
      A New Building
      Conversion and Remodeling
      Refurbishing the Existing Building
      Additional Distribution Options

      A Library Bill of Rights
      B Kendall Public Library Long- and Short-Range Plans 1999-2003


Darlene E. Weingand

Darlene E. Weingand, Ph.D., is currently adjunct professor at the University of Hawaii, Manoa, and professor emeritus at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where she served for many years as professor in the School of Library and Information Studies. One of the nation's leading marketing consultants, speakers, and educators in library and information science management, Weingand is the best-selling author of Customer Service Excellence: A Concise Guide for Librarians and Future-Driven Library Marketing (ALA Editions).

"This book has been the standard work on the administration of small public libraries, providing a solid overview on all aspects relating to its effective administration. The latest edition continues this tradition and reflects the changes and developments of the past nine years, with its increased emphasis on client service, the ongoing relevance of effective management techniques, the importance of accountability and the need to be proactive within, and relevant to, the community the public library serves."
—Australian Library Journal

"…very highly recommended, essential reading for students of library science, practicing small town and rural librarians, library board members, and interested non-specialist generalist readers…"
—Midwest Book Review

"From this reviewer's perspective, i.e., former director of a small public library and present elected trustee of that same library, this book is a gold mine…. [S]hould be a staple on every small library's administrative shelf. Highly recommended."
—Catholic Library World