29 May 2006


Journalist Stacy Perman has written a wonderful article on BusinessWeek online (30 May 2006). The Library: Next Best Thing to an MBA focuses on how “an increasing number of would-be entrepreneurs are turning to their local public libraries for help in every aspect of launching their businesses.”

She continues, “According to a 2006 study conducted by the American Library Assn. (ALA), a Chicago-based trade group [trade group?!—I thought ALA was a professional association], 61% of small-business owners living in the U.S. said libraries were important in helping them get started.”

“[T]here are more than 117,000 libraries across the country, and a growing number of them now provide dedicated sections and resources for helping entrepreneurs. "What libraries are trying to do is to respond to changes in the business community," says Leslie Burger, the incoming president of the ALA and the director of the Princeton Public Library in New Jersey.”

“Many libraries offer a great depth and breadth of printed and digital information on how to tackle tasks from the prosaic (such as applying for a business license) to the more complicated (like writing a business plan, securing bank financing, and generally structuring and building a business). Many also offer seminars and workshops and opportunities to meet with current and retired business owners and executives.”

Thanks for the plug, Stacy!

There also was one interesting comment on this article. “Fanxiebin” wrote, “The right and accurate knowledge are invaluable and always the key element to reach success. The problem nowadays is that in an era when all of us are flooded by information, how can one identify and collect the right knowledge? No doubt, librarians are the right people who can give you a hand. And I fully agree that professionals like librarians that provide services that direct people to the right knowledge they need is a promising job next to MBA. And more important, the potential of such services has not been recognized by the crowd yet.” [Emphasis mine.]

How about circulating this article to your management?

Thanks to Stephen Abram for noting this on his blog, Stephen’s Lighthouse.


This article: http://www.businessweek.com/smallbiz/content/

Stephen’s Lighthouse: http://stephenslighthouse.sirsi.com

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