Librarian Ire

Wednesday, November 30, 2005


I know someone who apparently was absent on the day they taught listening to others in kindergarten.
It's a common enough problem in this busy modern world of ours, but this particular person happens to be in charge of a department in the library. One that deals with patrons(a lot). As you may have guessed it is the return of the Mood Swing Boss(MSB)

So perhaps this is a problem. Let me illustrate. MSB had forgotten her password to a staff only area of our ILL software. I told her that I knew everyone has the same type of password for it. Maybe she should try inputting 'xyz' with her information.
She totally ignored me and my suggestion and called up the head of ILL (Mrs. ILL) for the password.
I asked her a week later, in innocent conversation, if she got her password and she told me what it was and I said, "Oh, that's what I thought it might be," and she had a mini-tirade about me not telling her these things and not communicating.
I waited until she had wound down(in front of another co-worker no less!) and said, I did tell you before you called Mrs. ILL and you never even acknowledged my suggestion. She didn't like hearing that, but since I was right she couldn't do anything about it.

Another illustration of the not listening problem happened a while ago. With Mrs. ILL. I know she gets tired of hearing about problems from us. Well, MSB actually. I rarely call her with problems. I call the staffers. :)
Anyway Mrs ILL was here to fix a non-existent problem that the MSB insisted was urgent. She actually had explained the problem and what MSB should have done twice. Finally she was fed up and said to MSB, "Will you ever start listening to me?"
I found that comment quite funny. I had to leave the room so no one could see me grinning like a nut.

What drives me up a wall, is when she makes me go help a patron who has a question and then when the person has their answer she comes in and starts the process all over again.
Then the student has to repeat all the information and even has told MSB that they have what they need, but she totally ignores them and does the searches all over again. So instead of a 2 minute transaction it takes 10 minutes.
I used to try to explain what I did and what they needed, but she ignores me, so I just find something else to do and let her handle the patrons.
Good customer service is not repeating someone else's efforts.

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