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Tutor profile: Mary G.

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Mary G.
Public Librarian with over 25 years of experience
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Questions

Subject: Study Skills

TutorMe
Question:

Help! I’m easily overwhelmed with a huge assignment. How can I possibly do all of this by the day the teacher wants it?

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Mary G.
Answer:

The best way to approach a big assignment is to break it down into manageable pieces and set dates to have these pieces complete. What are the elements that you can break out into small parts to do one at a time? If it’s a paper, you can pick your topic and create an outline. Lay out each piece, estimate how much time you expect it to take and then assign due dates for each piece. Create a checklist of each piece you are going to work on with the estimated time and “due date” for that part of the assignment. If you work through it this way you will feel less overwhelmed by a large assignment.

Subject: Library and Information Science

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Question:

Many people believe that libraries are no longer relevant because we have Amazon & Google. How are libraries changing and how are they still relevant?

Inactive
Mary G.
Answer:

While it’s true that many people today enjoy using Google or Amazon to locate information and entertainment options, the library has many advantages to relying on them to fill the role of the library. Librarians are trained professionals, many holding Masters degrees in the area of Library and Information Science. We are trained to craft searches and evaluate information for accuracy and relevance. Library collections are curated by the staff and policies and procedures exist that help us to provide collections relevant to the needs of the community. A librarian will ask you questions & have a conversation with you to help you find exactly what you are looking for whether it’s a recommendation for your next book or movie or helping you locate the information you seek. Libraries have also evolved to be centers of creation, offering things such as 3D printers, recording studios, art classes and more. We are helping people become creators, not just consumers of information. Libraries have evolved from places of passive, quiet study to centers of collaboration offering a variety of spaces to meet the needs of different users. You can find groups of students using small study rooms containing whiteboards and screens to work on projects or that same room can be used for quiet study when one needs a break from distractions. Outdoor spaces are used for community gardens, story times and concerts. Libraries were ready to step in to provide WiFi hotspots and Chromebooks to check out when doors were closed during Covid. Digital resources allow access 24/7 from anywhere in the world. Libraries have embraced change and continue to evolve with the ever changing needs of the communities they serve.

Subject: Management

TutorMe
Question:

How do I deal with an employee who is a few minutes late on a daily basis. When they do finally arrive, they take another 5 minutes to actually be ready to work. I have let this slide for over a year because I have felt uncomfortable dealing with it and thought maybe I was over reacting.

Inactive
Mary G.
Answer:

It can be difficult to deal with a situation that you have let continue for such a long time but I understand it can be difficult as a new manager to figure out when and how to intervene. There are several approaches you can take to manage the situation going forward. You could talk with the employee directly. Let them know that you have noticed that they arrive a little late each day and you would like to know the reason why. It could be that they take public transportation and the transportation schedule makes it impossible to them to be on time or perhaps they have a child they have to get on a school bus and the bus is chronically late (I’ve been there!). If it’s possible, you could offer to adjust their schedule so that they are at work in enough time to be ready to work at the start of their shift. They may tell you that a previous boss didn’t think it was a problem and since you never said anything they didn’t know there was a problem. In this instance, you should lay out your expectations and let them know that going forward they are going to need to arrive on time and ready to work at X time. Let them know that if they continue to be late of a regular basis that you will then need to work through the discipline procedure in your staff handbook. If you don’t have one, now would be a good time to start putting one together! If you are trying to shore up all of your procedures & policies because there are issues across the board or you don’t want to single a person out considering the amount of time that behaviors have been allowed to go on, you could address things generally at a staff meeting. For example, you could say that you are trying to shore up procedures and that you need everyone to be mindful of being on time, completing work accurately, etc going forward. Lay out to them what’s expected and what happens if things don’t corrected. Make sure you document everything so if you do need to move to the next step, you have an accurate account of what was said and what you have done to help fix the problem.

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