Strategic Planning: Getting Started

If you're getting ready to plan, any time is a good time to start the conversation and gather data.  Here are some questions and resources to get you going:

1. What does the future look like?  Brief, thoughtful pieces to get you started thinking

Not Your Mother’s Library. The Atlantic, Deborah Fallows, October 6, 2014

Chrystie Hill, Libraries Present and Future  “When everything is online, why come to the library at all?” Planning at Aarhus Library, Denmark

What to expect from libraries in the 21st century: Pam Sandlian Smith

Lee Rainie, Director of the Pew Research Center’s Internet Project, on seven questions libraries need to address about future services and their role:

American Library Association Center for the Future of Libraries:

Anythink Tank   Innovation Sandbox at Anythink Libraries, Rangeview Library District, CO.

2. What do we need to know about the library and the community?

Use Montana Public Library Statistics Center to track usage trends over five years: circ, visits, registered borrowers, program attendance, etc.

Demographics for town, county and state; census information:

Current, easily accessible and thorough economic and demographic analysis, community profiles, maps and data from the Montana Census and Economic Information Center (CEIC):

Other community agencies and how the library services overlap or are unique:

Use the Community Analysis Scan Form from Library Research Service in Colorado.   to organize information about employers, business, health providers, area libraries, and community resources.

3. What do we need to know about libraries and how they operate?

Library Service Responses 18 descriptions of roles public libraries fill. Created by Sandra Nelson for the Public Library Association in 2008