What librarians can learn from Dancing with the Stars

Tis the season for “Dancing with the Stars” once again.  As I watch Dancing with the Stars for another season, I start wondering about what librarians and technicians can learn from this programme.  One of the most obvious lessons for librarians is how to become better team players.  You really need to work closely together as a member of a team in order to succeed both in dancing and in libraries.  Dancing with the Stars teaches us that we may have to work through the pain sometimes.  How good are we at doing this?  I think we could definitely improve here.  Another tip from the popular dance programme is to not be afraid to try something new.  How frequently do we eagerly take up new projects and directions in our libraries?  Not often enough in my opinion.  Another lesson for us is doing our library work with a sense of joy and fun.  Do our libraries embrace fun and joy?  Another lesson for us is to not be afraid to make mistakes and get out of our comfort zone.  Most of the stars on this dance programme are taking that leap of faith to operate outside their comfort zone and regular area of expertise.  We can also learn to continually stay positive and dress up with our best behaviour and attitudes for our library patrons.  I think we can be that positive safe refuge for our library users.   Let’s put some of these dance moves into practice and work on improving our atmosphere and welcome to our library users.

Linda Howard, Past President HLABC