Training - BC ELN - BC Electronic Library Network

Report
Effective Reference
Encounters:
Achieving Service Excellence
Preconference Presented by
Marie L. Radford, Ph.D.
[email protected]
British Columbia Library Association,
Burnaby, BC, Canada
1:30pm-4:30pm
April 16, 2009
1
AGENDA

Defining & Delivering Excellent Service
 In

FtF & Virtual Environments
Promoting Positive Encounters
 Stress


& Problematic Behavior
Approachability & NV Communication
Overcoming Barriers to Excellence
Reference Environment:
What’s Changed?
More complex society, systems, sources,
& services.
 Factors adding to complexity:

 High
Tech
 Rapid Change
 Time Constraints
 Budget Constraints
 Diversity of Users
3
Why Bother??


Satisfied?
 Remembers
18 months
 Tells 4-8 friends
Dissatisfied?
 Remembers 23.5
months
 Tells 9-16
friends
 Takes 7 things
going right to
recover from 1
thing going
wrong!
Management Literature Comes
to Consensus

Front-line staff are vital link.
 Must
be empowered to address user needs:
Knowledge
 Authority
 Adequate Resources
 Confidence
 Training

5
If we can reduce the stressful
encounters and multiply the
satisfying ones, our working
lives will be more enjoyable!
6
Expectations: 2 Views
Users
-Short-term objective
-Immediate gratification
-Expects to use less
effort than actually
required
-Technological Idolatry

Librarians
-Long-term objective(s)
-Creation of “Independent
User”
-Instruction Opportunity
-Expects good attitude &
effort

Service Excellence:
2 Views
From Library USER’s
Point of View



Satisfaction increases
Complaints decrease
Positive library
experience enforces
positive feelings
From YOUR
Point of View






Numbers go up
Support up
PR improved
Morale up
Effectiveness up
Your day is pleasant!
Reference Research

Radford & Connaway


Radford







Seeking Synchronicity Chat (2005-2008)
Encountering Virtual Users (2006)
The Reference Encounter (1999)
Approach or Avoidance? (1998)
Dewdney & Michell (1996) Oranges & Peaches
Ross & Dewdney (1994) Best Practices
Relationships & communication important for
success & satisfaction
Present in all venues FtF, e-mail, & chat!
9
Dual Dimensions

Content
 The
“WHAT”

Relational
 “HOW”
message is
to be taken
 Information
exchange
 Relationship
of
participants
10
Reference Success:
2 Views
Users
 Highly value

Librarian’s attitude &
personal qualities.

 Some value
interpersonal aspects
more than receipt
of info.
 In VR info valued highly.
Librarians
Highly value content,
transfer of info.
Also value
relationship qualities
(but to a lesser
degree).
11
ALA/RUSA
Guidelines (2004)
Components
 Approachability
 Interest
 Listening/Inquiring
 Searching
 Follow-up
Approachability & Interest

Extremely important
for service
excellence

Mostly
communicated
nonverbally
13
Activity
Approachability
Quiz
14
Nonverbal Communication
Messages





65% or more of
communication
Powerful, instant,
judgments
Diverse user base, likely
to be NV differences
Wrong to interpret NV
behavior of one culture =
NV behavior of another
See handout for NV
behaviors
Positive NV Behaviors







Immediately acknowledges
user
Frequent eye contact
Nods, or indicates that request
is being understood
Uses sympathetic noises
(mmm)
Holds head up
Cheerful facial expression
Leans forward
16
Negative NV Behaviors








No immediate acknowledgment
No change when approached
Stays seated
Body turned away
“Do not disturb” posture
Annoying nervous gestures
Makes negative noises
Uses sharp tone of voice
17
Major Cause of Problematic
Behavior
STRESS

Interpersonal relationships
with co-workers & library
users are the major source
of stress to library staff

But also the major source
of satisfaction!
18
Causes of STRESS





Modern Life
Economic Woe
Emotional Woe
Relationships
Staff Stressors
 Short
staffing
 Ever-growing & competing
user demands, expectations
 Lack of compensation
 Time pressure - overwork
19
TECHNOSTRESS

Stress brought on by dealing
with technology
 Rapid change
 Software problems
 Hardware meltdown
 Training lag
 Technological idolatry
 Upgrade fatigue
20
Burnout – Another Type of Stress
Characteristics:

diminished personal
accomplishment
 emotional exhaustion
 depersonalization
21
Who is Most Susceptible to
Burnout?
 People
in helping professions
who have significant amounts of
interpersonal contact.
 Sound
familiar?
22
10 Trends Complicating Our LivesMaking us Cranky
Compressed Time
Communication Overload
Dis-Connectedness
Cost
Competition
Customer Contact
Computers
Change
Coming of Age
Complexity
(Adapted from Charles, 1999)
23
Activity

Cranky Quotient
24
Coping with STRESS
Yours & Theirs

Lowering Your Stress- Common Sense
 Rest,
Exercise, Nutrition
 Spirituality/Meditation
 Balance Work/Fun

Beating Burnout – “Triple A” Approach
 Awareness,

Analysis, Action
Knowing Strategies when Other is Stressed
 Be
Prepared for Stressful Encounters
 Reduce Stressful Encounters
25
BREAK TIME

Please return on time, Thanks!
26
Video Clips
27
Small Group Activity

Break into groups of 3
 Remember
a difficult interaction you had
(or observed) recently with a library user.
 What happened?
 What went well? Not so well?
 What did you learn?
 What would you do differently?
Take turns discussing.
 Report out.

28
Take the LAST Approach for
Difficult Interactions
 Listen
 Apologize
 Solve Problem
 Thank Them!
29
HALT!
Hungry
Angry
Late
Tired
30
When the Answer is NO…
Focus on what you CAN do, vs. CAN’T do
 Offer alternatives
 Offer partial accommodation
 Show genuine regret
 Provide some explanation
 Broken Record Technique - be polite, but
firm in repeating “no” if necessary

31
Chat vs. FtF -- Similarities?
Real Time
 Negotiating Questions
 Answering Questions
 Service Excellence as Goal
 Diverse Variety of Users
 Building Relationships
 Time Pressure!

32
VRS Session Times

Session time
 Mean – 12.42 Minutes
 Median – 12 Minutes
 Minimum – 12 Seconds
 Maximum – 71 Minutes

Wait time
 Mean – 1.87 Minutes
 Median – 1 Minute
 Minimum – 1 Second
 Maximum – 67 Minutes
33
Chat vs. FtF – Differences?
Keyboard Woes!
 Lack of NV Cues!
 Limited Knowledge of User
 Limited Knowledge of Available Resources
 Technical Problems
 Transcript produced
 Other Differences?

34
Transcript Analysis Results
2 Major Themes

Relational Facilitators
 Aspects
with positive impact on interaction that
enhance communication.

Relational Barriers
 Aspects
with negative impact on interaction that
impede communication.
35
Transcript Examples

Natural Resources of Washington (Positive)




Telekinetic Powers (Negative)




Question Type: Ready Reference
Subject Type: Economics
Duration: 19 min., 21 sec.
Question Type: Subject Search
Subject Type: Parapsychology & Occultism
Duration: 7 min., 29 sec.
Physics (Negative)



Question Type: Subject Search
Subject Type: Physics
Duration: 17 min., 8 sec.
Small Group Activity
•Looking at transcripts
•Facilitators, Barriers
•What works?
•What doesn’t work so well?
•Comments?
Recommendations:
Chat & FtF



See Recommendations in handout
Training in basic interpersonal skills
Awareness user may need reassurance
 Recognize

& provide reassurance
Awareness of appropriate self-disclosure
 When
to disclose
 Acknowledgment of user’s self-disclosure

Humor – importance of acknowledgment
38
More Recommendations

Greetings & Closings.
 Beware
negative closure!
 Beware robotic scripts!
Inclusion (use of we, let’s, etc.).
 Take cue from user & mirror relational
strategies.
 Don’t B afraid 2 use informal language,
abbreviations & emoticons as appropriate.

39
What Library Users Expect…
You care
 Keep Promises
 “Fair Fix”
 Apology (if appropriate)
 Professional Response

40
Bottom Line for Service Excellence

Area of Ongoing
Improvement, but…

Worth it!!

See list of additional
readings.

Questions?
End Notes

This is one of the outcomes from the project
Seeking Synchronicity: Evaluating Virtual Reference
Services from User, Non-User, and Librarian
Perspectives

Funded by IMLS, Rutgers University, & OCLC
Online Computer Library Center, Inc.

Special thanks to Co- PI, Lynn Silipigni
Connaway, Ph.D., Senior Research Scientist,
OCLC
Project web site:
http://www.oclc.org/research/projects/synchronicit
y/


similar documents