Small Business and the Public Library: Strategies for a Successful Partnership

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  • Description
  • Table of Contents
  • About the Authors
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Aligning with current difficult economic times, this book helps libraries assist users entering or already involved in the small business community. Authors Weiss, Serlis-McPhillips, and Malafi are public librarians who have incorporated small business services within their library. In their book they point the way to addressing the needs of job seekers, and those starting or operating their own businesses, offering

  • Innovative programming ideas
  • Easy to translate suggestions into day-to-day operations
  • Suggestions to helping clients become business literate on the web, on paper, and out in the world of work

Whether patrons need resources to start their own business, search for a new job, or locate demographic statistics to help them market their existing product, this resource will help you answer questions and meet their needs.


Chapter 1 Business Services and the Mission of the Library
Chapter 2 Collection Development: Tools of the Trade
Chapter 3 Programming: Opening the Doors
Chapter 4 Marketing: Getting the Word Out
Chapter 5 Networking: Meeting and Greeting
Chapter 6 The Power of Partnerships
Chapter 7 Funding: How to Pay for It All
Chapter 8 The Future



Luise Weiss

Luise Weiss is the former head of adult reference and the Miller Business Resource Center at Middle Country Public Library in Centereach, New York. A graduate of Cornell University, she holds an MLS from the Palmer School of Library and Information Science and a BS from SUNY Stony Brook. Although retired, she works part-time at the Miller Business reference desk and teaches as an adjunct faculty member at the Palmer School. She has served as chair of ALA's BRASS Business References Sources committee and has been a member of the BRASS Business in Public Libraries committee.

Sophia Serlis-McPhillips

Sophia Serlis-McPhillips is the coordinator of adult reference and the Miller Business Resource Center at the Middle Country Public Library. She earned a master's degree and a certificate in public library administration from the Palmer School, where she is an adjunct professor. She is on the NOVEL (New York Online Virtual Electronic Library) steering committee and has served on the ALA's BRASS Business in Public Libraries committee.

Elizabeth Malafi

Elizabeth Malafi is the coordinator of adult programming and the Miller Business Resource Center at the Middle Country Public Library. She graduated with a BA from Hofstra University and earned her master's degree from the Palmer School, where she has since taught library science courses. She also serves on ALA's BRASS Business Reference Sources committee and contributes to the “Outstanding Business Reference Sources” column of Reference and User Services Quarterly. In 2008 she won the BRASS Dun & Bradstreet Public Librarian Support Award.

"Using the real-world examples and sound advice outlined in this book as a foundation for creating a library's business center can enhance and guarantee any business library's relevancy well into the future."
--Public Libraries