Thursday, November 09, 2006

Toxicity in the library workplace - a survey

This is all aobut emotional or sense related inter-relationship in library as a workplace.

Any librarian, who thinks in-line with Ranganathan to conenct library with biological connotations, will find that concern for wellness, well-being and care of the staff is an essential component of managing the human capital. And the survey ...

"Some researchers have identified hostile, unreasonable and emotionally distressing work behaviors as "toxic" in that they poison the whole workplace environment. We are investigating the question of how much this happens in libraries and how severe it is. Please answer a few short questions to help us learn about your experiences. complete the survey

Studies have been done in business on the effects of emotional toxicity in the workplace, but few studies have been done on emotional toxicity in library workplaces. We are attempting to learn more about the amount of emotional toxicity in libraries, and ask that you take our survey at . The survey is confidential and takes only about ten minutes to complete. The results will be reported in a panel at next spring's ACRL conference in Baltimore.

Thank you.
Terrence Bennett, Mollie Freier, Ann Riley

Mary P. (Mollie) Freier
Library Instructional Services
Brookens Library, Room 233
University of Illinois at Springfield
One University Plaza, MS BRK 140
Springfield, IL 62703-5407
(217) 206-7290

My 2 cents worth: I just received a comment from Prof. Neelameghan on the above subject. Based on this, I think the bigger issue is about human relations in libraries and librarianship. Are there any surveys, yes. Too generic a subject.

How about managing related issues
a) isolation in library, as a workplace? Any studies? No idea. [PS. I have compiled a bibliography on the subject of Isolation in Chaplaincy. Ask me please.]
b) grief in workplace? Any studies? No idea. [read the existing literature in the following citations to understand how caregivers care for themselves]
c) counseling the library staff in times of downsizing, layoff, etc.? No idea

see also related literature
  • Bibliography of Emotion Research, zum Buch Mediale Emotionen
    Bibliographie zur Emotionsforschung
    [Note posted in [DIG_REF] Art, Media & Emotion: To those interested in research on Media & Emotion - The bibliography on Art, Media & Emotion, compilated during a project of the Young Academy of Sciences, Berlin is now online]
  • Reinhold, Barbara Bailey. Toxic work : how to overcome stress, overload, and burnout and revitalize your career, New York : Dutton, c1996.
  • Time to Treat Toxic Emotions at Work
    Real emotional pain festers in every work environment and, if left unchallenged, can cripple an organization. Call in the "toxin handlers," advises author Peter Frost in Toxic Emotions at Work, from Harvard Business School Press. Read our interview and excerpt.
  • Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives. Recommended Resource List: StressMaterials indicated by call numbers may be found on site using the State Library's Online Catalog.
  • Menz, Robert L. A pastoral counselor's model for wellness in the workplace : psychergonomics Haworth Pastoral Press, 2003
  • Levinson H.. Emotional toxicity of the work environment. Arch Environ Health. 1969 Aug;19(2):239-43. Emotional toxicity of the work environment.
  • Lisa Cox-Whalen; Juliet Nurse; Mary F. Steele. Job Loss & Pastoral Counseling.
  • Goleman, Daniel (2003) "Destructive Emotions, How Can We Overcome Them?" A scientific dialog with the Dalai Lama Narrated by Daniel Goleman, Bantam Books, ISBN
    0-553-80171-6. Book Review
  • Fostering Sustainable Behavior
  • Peace of mind for a sustainable future

    My related post:
  • Carl Jung's Conceptualization About Thinking, Feeling, Sensation, Intuition
  • Emotional Communication Interface - Revisited

    A previous, related post in my blog (about living and bio-organic sources in libraries): Library is a Growing Organism - Dr. Ranganathan's Fifth Law Revisited

    Anonymous said...

    All the 'toxicity' and related issues arise because the library is a living, growing organism which survives by adapting and evolving. The workplace is the environment which is becoming increasingly 'global' and relationships and connections multiply and can become complex. The library has to survive (and continue to accomplish its mission dynamically) by remaining 'competitive' in the changing environment, internal and external. For instance, introduction of new technology can create tensions and conflicts, in various ways, among staff members, workjers and managers, etc. Stress and tension affect work and so on.

    Best wishes
    A. Neelameghan

    Anonymous said...

    In any group of people there will be personality incompatibilities. A lot of the time these can be minimised with a good leader. Problem is that most leader tend more towards ambition rather than people skills. A leader with people skills can ease all the externals such a new technology, but it takes an exceptional leader to handle the personalities in a group.