Crash Course in Time Management for Library Staff
by Brenda Hough
February 2018, 99pp, 8 1/2x11
1 volume, Libraries Unlimited

Paperback: 978-1-4408-5067-7
$45, 38€, A65
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-5068-4
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

If you are always thinking, “I’m so busy! I wish I had more time,” then this book is for you.

This book offers time management tools, tips, and techniques for busy librarians, so they can better serve their communities and feel greater satisfaction with work and life.

Being short on resources is now “the new normal” for libraries—and having too little money and too few staff members always brings library staff to the same predicament: not enough time. While it is not possible to create more time, by making use of the right time management tools and techniques, it IS possible to make huge improvements in your productivity—and as side benefits, a decrease in job stress and frustration and a greater sense of work satisfaction.

This book shows how to apply powerful time management strategies so you can get more done, deliver the best service possible to your patrons, and enjoy being in an environment that fosters greater creativity and workplace satisfaction. Topics include time tracking, task management, identifying goals and priorities, beating the obstacles of procrastination and perfectionism as well as distractions and interruptions, and staying on top of time management when collaborating. Quotes and stories from individuals who work in libraries illustrate key points and concepts throughout the book. The final chapter explains how to set a personal plan for time management—using the awareness of your own patterns, obstacles, and goals, and the experience you have gained with various time management techniques and tools—to create your own unique time management strategy and make time management an ongoing, long-term priority.


  • Provides invaluable information for any librarian who struggles with managing "too much to do" on a daily basis
  • Offers practical, effective ways to address the main obstacles to good time management
  • Presents stories from real libraries to illustrate key points and show readers that they are not alone in their time management challenges
Brenda Hough has focused on professional development in libraries for more than 20 years. Her work in libraries has included assessments, evaluations, training, and instruction for national, state, and local initiatives as well as projects with Infopeople, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, WebJunction, the Public Library Association, the Edge Initiative, and the Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies. Hough is committed to providing opportunities for library staff to expand their knowledge and skills so that they can best meet the needs of the communities they serve. Her website is


"Readers unfamiliar with the subject will find many helpful hints here. . . . VERDICT For readers new to the topic of time management."—Library Journal, May 1, 2018

"This useful book of time management tools is applicable to all library staff in all types of libraries, with a holistic treatment of both work and personal tasks. . . . Even the most effective manager can pick up something new from Brenda Hough’s manual, such as experimenting with a different time-control tool or coaching staff to apply more effective time management skills at work. Whether you are a student juggling work with classes, a librarian or tech running a program or staffing a public desk, or a harried supervisor, you can further hone your skills to become more productive and happier with what you can get done. Time Management for Library Staff can give you clear-cut ideas, but it is up to you to try them out."—Public Library Quarterly, July 27, 2018

"On the whole, I found this to be an informative resource on time management for library staff. The examples given provide a meaningful context for readers working in libraries, including specialized health libraries. And while many of the ideas that Hough presents may not be new to readers already familiar with the concept, the book provides a great overview of time management ideas and tools."—Journal of the Canadian Health Libraries Association, December 5, 2018
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