Heather to facilitate - Be nice to have everyone in the room intro themselves (1 min each) and have a common question to answer like “what brought you here?” or something. AND, we ask what problem/opportunity they have brought with them. (if no particular problem, that’s fine, we’ll have no shortage!) 3rd question: what do they hope to bring back to the office on Monday.
Our starting point today is complexity… it’s a complex interconnected world, and no organization or institution is an island apart. Digital only brings us even closer and more connected. We’re in a time of such rapid change, that by the time an organization designs, plans and implements a major program or project, the need that was intended to be addressed may have shifted, the context has shifted on us. “Cost of delay” is king. Hackers and Hacking, though sometimes maligned, has always been a step ahead in terms of realizing the speed of trying something and learning is the key differentiator.
Question: which would you rather be part of… chair a quality of service improvement committee, or be part of a service improvement discovery task force? And Why? What differentiates task forces from committees?
We had a few names for this session, and we settled on this because hacking has some negative associations. We could have said “innovation” or “experimentation”. But we wanted to keep “hacking” as a term because it does have a certain renegade spirit that is healthy and so needed in organizations today, maybe especially libraries. And the term pops up in many places today. Growth hacking, Life Hacking, Brain hacking… all are about exploring the edges of disciplines or domains. I like to think of hacking as “systematic experimentation and learning”.
And the other reason for this, here at Charleston Conference… because this conference needs more visionaries and more do-ers, in other words, more hackers. We need to build an annual pipeline of people who are experimenting and trying new things, creating poster sessions, telling their stories, and we hope… applying for FastPitch competition. Question: did you know there was not enough entries to host FastPitch this year? We need more risk takers.
Tell story of Raimonda Margioni and Michelle McClure from Univ. of Florida, and their “hack” of their library budgeting process.
And, why libraries? Because...
This is safe space… it is inclusive space… it is where we can experiment, try things, even if they’re silly, crazy, it’s all good. We’ll have some activities to guide and create those spaces. These are even called, and for good reason, “liberating structures” (great book by that name)
Question: what happens in group meetings typically today when a big decision is on the table. How does your organization approach such a thing?
Liberating structures bring in multiple voices, they force us to question all our assumptions about how things are and how they might be. Encourage us to be forever curious. Forever asking “what else?”, “what next?”, “what might be possible if…” They push us “out of the building” and certainly out of our comfort zone, to listen more deeply, more empathically, and more objectively to our customers, our patrons, our stakeholders. Shouldn’t librarians be good at this? We think so.
Liberating structures engage and energize, and give a vote to everyone, literally. You’ll see us use a technique called “dot voting” for just that purpose.
Where can you apply these skills? Everywhere in your organization. These are the 21st century tools for solving 21st century problems. The bots will get everything else, but not this! ;)
This is the Cesar Chavez method, the “Si, se puede” approach. It’s a fundamentally optimistic take on what’s possible if we’re prepared to think anew about our challenges. Constraints actually make us more creative, and worded craftily, constraints married to big ambitions, are called “propelling questions” and they can truly propel our thinking forward.
I think this is where we hear from the participants both their direct and indirect or meta-learning. Let's see what they noticed. We could start by asking...
what were some patterns that kept appearing today?
What were some things you noticed that we did?
What else about this hacking and these techniques surprised you, in good or bad ways? Let's pull it from them, see what they say.