Well, I think it is hard to unlock that kind of thought as all the library users do not see the full range of works done by librarians at various levels.
What they see in their daily visits to the library is just the tip of the iceberg. They harvest the fruits of the labours by librarians and library staff like the way we get rice from supermarket.
When rice is purchased from the shelf, many kids and adults may not know the hard work of the peasants and workers in planting and milling rice.
Many library readers borrow books from the library do not really know how books make its way to the library shelf. When they remove the books from the shelf, they do not need to know how it was returned to the same place in the original order.
Why library always have some books that they like? Most readers are of different professions and at different age and continue to grow in their life journey or career path, how could the library facilitates their diverse and changing needs?
Now we have ebooks and Internet, hence, more and more people think that the world may not need a physical library and the service of librarians.
Emma Cragg and Katie Birkwood write "Beyond books: what it takes to be a 21st century librarian" and the article is published in guardian.co.uk,
Both of them try to clear the mental doubt and explain in details "From connecting with people to keeping up with the latest technologies, there is a whole lot more to the job than stamping due dates"
Full text of the article is available at
Here are some points I extracted to share with the readers here:
* There are librarians who select the books for purchase... process the orders and ... create the bibliographic records that make it possible for you to find the book in the library catalogue and then on the shelves.
* Books are only one aspect... Librarianship is a people profession; a librarian's job is to connect people with the information they are seeking, whatever format that may take.
* ... library jobs have a central purpose: to help people access and use information, for education, for work, or for pleasure.
* ... customer service and communication skills are important. If anyone ever thought they'd become a librarian because they liked books or reading, they would be sorely disappointed if they did not also like people too.
* Libraries of all kinds are keen to demonstrate their value to as wide an audience as possible, and to open up access to culturally significant resources that they hold.
* In the digital age, when information is increasingly becoming available online, there is a propensity to say that libraries and librarians are redundant. This is not the case. Information available online is often of dubious origin and there is still a wealth of information behind paywalls that can only be accessed by those who have paid.
* ... helped many library users ... using search engines for their research ...
* ... being good communicators with people and active adopters and exploiters of technological developments, librarians need to have detailed specialist subject knowledge to pass on to library users.
* Librarians provide training to show people how to search for information and evaluate what they find.
* These information skills sessions ... include digital literacies ... stay safe online ... social media sites and online collaboration tools.