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Communicating externally with shareholders


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My slides for a talk at the American Library Association 2010 meeting about communicating with external audiences, especially elected officials.

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Communicating externally with shareholders

  1. 1. Communicating externally with shareholders <br />Shabbir J. Imber Safdar<br />Website:<br />Twitter: @ShabbirSafdar<br />Conference hashtag: #ala10<br />American Library Association Annual Meeting - 2010<br />Washington, DC<br />
  2. 2. Be able to demonstrate value of your library to its community to “funders” (trustees, regents and/or elected officials)<br />And yet, you don’t want to become highly politicized for a myriad of reasons (lobbying prohibitions, messaging conflict with lobbying staff, maintenance of non-partisan status)<br />What do you want?<br />
  3. 3. Who is your communications target? Your funding source<br />Regentsand trustees (administration)<br />State and local legislators:<br />State Senate, Assembly, and County/City Councils<br />State and local executives:<br />Governors, county executives, and mayors<br />Staff of anyone above<br />
  4. 4. Very young, very overworked, and extremely wary.<br />Always balancing thorough research for their job with the danger of one-sided information.<br />Assumes everyone has an agenda.<br />Ultimately trying to figure out the best advice to give their boss.<br />What’s it like to be “staff”?<br />
  5. 5. “What is the benefit of this library to the community it serves?”<br />“What is the value of the library in measurable terms?”<br />“What recent cuts has this library endured?”<br />“What arguments can you provide to help preserve library funding?”<br />“What would be the benefit to the community of additional funding?”<br />What likely questions do you need to be prepared for?<br />
  6. 6. How industries make their case<br />
  7. 7. Business Activity: On average, in fiscal year 2007, each dollar of NIH funding generated more than twice as much in state economic output. That is, an overall investment of $22.846 billion from NIH generated a total of $50.537 billion in new state business activity in the form of increased output of goods and services. <br />Jobs and Wages: In fiscal year 2007, NIH grants and contracts created and supported more than 350,000 jobs that generated wages in excess of $18 billion in the 50 states. The average wage associated with the jobs created was $52,000. <br />Families USA 2007 study, “In Your Own Backyard”<br /><br />
  8. 8. State impact of film industry<br />
  9. 9. “The Economic Contribution of Wisconsin Public Libraries to the Economy of Wisconsin” by Northstar Economics<br />
  10. 10. “Public Libraries – A Wise Investment”, by Library Research Service, March 2009<br />
  11. 11. Library Usage For City of Clive, Iowa<br />
  12. 12. Connect it with high profile issues, such as:<br />Job Creation: Usage of Internet-connected computers or other library facilities for job hunting or training<br />Education: Usage of library facilities for early childhood education<br />Find out if your elected official has a fondness for an issue that’s also active in your facility by reading the issues they promote on their official website<br />Making your usage data more relevant<br />
  13. 13. Most legislators send physical or email newsletter to their constituents.<br />Identify the events or services at your facility that a legislator would want to tell their constituents about.<br />Feed them to the legislator’s staff for inclusion in their constituent newsletter.<br />It’s hard to keep quiet about service cuts to a library whose events you’ve been promoting.<br />Your calendar has power<br />
  14. 14. “Library Benefits in an Economic Downturn”, by “Support Wisconsin Libraries”<br />“Economic Impact of Public Libraries” by the WI Dept. of Public Instruction (CO, FL, IN, PA, SC + local studies)<br />“The Library as Strategic Investment”, by Paula T. Kaufman<br />A copy of these slides is on SlideShare at:<br /><br />Or<br /><br />Background<br />