April 15th, I attended the workshops organized by the Plum Creek Library System at the Shalom Hill Retreat Center. The morning workshop was about giving good customer service to the library patrons. The phrase that covered it best was to treat them like you would want to be treated – the Golden Rule. First, we listed ways that would be considered bad customer service and how word of mouth can spread the reviews around. Then we talked about good customer service and the appreciation felt on the receiving end. We are to show hospitality to library visitors. We should fake happiness if we need to. We should go above and beyond to help patrons with their needs. Our attitude is more important than our aptitude. Several companies were used as examples of giving good customer service. Shake Shack employees were required to read a book by Denny Meyer, Setting the Table. The book stresses that customer Service is the primary concern. Libraries are like a business in that they have customers, products, want repeat business, and know the customers have other options.

After a good lunch brought together by the attendees, we had an afternoon workshop about book displays and marketing. The book display part was too short. It would have been good the hear more about ideas that other libraries use. We received some web sources to go to for help. The computer presentation, while presented very knowledgeably, did not pertain to me as much as to others.

The retreat was a good reminder of offering service at the library. It was good to see the ones that work at other libraries so they are not just a name on the computer. The center was an interesting place to explore during breaks.