A LETTER FROM THE DIRECTOR
The 19th century Prussian field marshal Helmuth von Moltke observed that no plan survives first contact with the enemy. I prefer Hannibal Smith’s triumphant A-Team cry, “I love it when a plan comes together.”
While our strategic plan is complete, it is not static. It will come together of the next five years as we implement the actions it recommends. And while von Moltke had a point – changing circumstances render many a plan ineffective as soon as the pixels are dry – we believe that our approach has resulted in a plan that is both durable and adaptable.
Our process was highly participatory, involving one-on-one interviews, focus groups, staff workshops, a community survey, and a deep dive into community and library facts and figures. We were informed by goals in the 2016 Randolph County Strategic Plan – developing “lifelong learners who have the ability to change and innovate”; promoting partnerships around arts, history and culture; and preserving our cultural assets to encourage education.
Believing that the library is a bedrock at the heart of the community’s success, and hearing from you some great ideas for new ways to ensure that it remains so, we identified four strategic priorities: access and inclusivity; readers and learners; civic and community engagement; and staff development. For each priority, the plan outlines actions that will allow us to deploy our services in a manner that empowers both individuals and the community at large, and enables us dynamically assess developing needs and pivot accordingly. While we focus on these priorities, we will continue to provide the essential functions and excellent service you and your families value so much.
Ultimately, this plan is for you, the library user – or potential user. The Seagrove family just embarking on their child’s reading journey. The middle school student in Ramseur struggling through a homework assignment. The high school student in Archdale finding solace in a young adult novel. The kids in Asheboro learning about the importance of bees and butterflies while tending the pollination station. Researchers in the Randolph Room developing a historical project. The Parents as Teachers family in Franklinville building the skills necessary to ensure their children’s success in school. The teacher in Randleman collecting additional resources for class. The adult in Liberty relaxing with a Hallmark romance movie or the latest best seller after a taxing day at work. Kids who can’t get to a library swarming the Mobile Library at a remote stop. The senior gratefully receiving a delivery from Extension Services. Individuals and groups using library spaces for reading, study, working, collaborating or just being. Community members exploring a compelling topic with a guest speaker. All of the above using our sophisticated information technology infrastructure for access and discovery.
You will hear more from us as we put this plan into action, and we welcome your continuing feedback, ideas and questions. As this plan goes from being to becoming, in five years as we look back, the community will be able to say, “We love it when a plan comes together.”
Ross A. Holt, Library Director
Randolph County Public Libraries cultivate a thriving community by nurturing readers, empowering learners and creating connections.
Libraries are a point of pride and connection for all residents of Randolph County, serving as vibrant centers of community, anticipating evolving needs and interests, and providing relevant materials and transformative experiences.
Service - We serve with heart and provide friendly, helpful faces and welcoming, accessible spaces. We are positive and responsive, compassionate and kind, and greet everyone with a smile.
Teamwork - We work together in order to better serve our community. We are flexible, adaptable, and respectful of our coworkers and community members.
Inclusion - We embrace people from all walks of life and provide a safe, judgement-free place for all. We remove barriers to access, value diverse perspectives, and welcome traditionally marginalized voices.
Curiosity - We are open to new ideas, especially when they challenge our own beliefs and assumptions. We believe that the library and the community thrive when minds are inquiring and hearts are open.
Stewardship - We are co-owners of community assets and caretakers of public resources. We engage the community in decision-making and promote trust, transparency, and accountability in all we do.