This post was inspired by the title of this lifehack article - 'People Don't Notice The Things We Do For Them Until We Stop Doing Them' (which it turns out has nothing whatsoever to do with its' title - very annoying) and it immediately made me think about how true this is for libraries.
Some particularly disheartening days I feel like this idea perfectly describes our work and that we should shut it all down for a month or two, until all of our clients realise what we provide and come crawling to us, begging us to come back (which of course is crazy, because many of them would never notice and most of the rest would just get angry). We are always here, always helpful, always taking on more without dropping anything, often going unnoticed.
And we really are always taking on more in libraries, while still maintaining everything else. There is always something else we should be into - Open Access, 3D printing, social media for researchers, gamification, more and more and more. But we are really bad at endings. Budgets are tight, staffing isn't increasing, and still we do more without dropping a thing. I am guilty of this too, we all are, no one likes to remove a service and then have people notice that we aren't doing that thing for them any more. But maybe we should just embrace it, embrace people noticing and show them what we have begun instead, explain how we are freeing ourselves to do even better things for them.
I would love to stop doing things, so we can engage people in the new stuff instead.