May 09, 2008
Rules and Rules...but PLEASE USE YOUR BRAINS!
Saw this article from Reuters.
Woman fired for giving 16-cent treat to toddler
Fri May 9, 2008 7:42am EDT
TORONTO (Reuters) - An attendant at a Canadian restaurant who was sacked for giving a bite-sized doughnut, worth 16 cents, to an agitated toddler was given her job back on Thursday after the case received wide media attention.
Nicole Lilliman, a single mother, said she was dismissed from a London, Ontario, outlet of the Tim Hortons coffee and doughnut chain after video cameras captured the 27-year-old giving a Timbit to a toddler.
--see link for the rest of the article--
I am very glad that they have seen the error of their ways and reinstated her. I know the old adage that says 'take care of the pennies, and the dollars will take care of themselves.' But this sets up a relationship between the customer, the staff and the product that distances reason with reality.
I know that employee theft can be a big issue, but for any operation that provides a service (be it a restaurant or a library), the need to know when the rules should be applied and when the rules could be suspended. And we do not need to extrapolate to everyone in the store...did everyone need a free timbit that day?
I would like to think that we can do something different or special for someone, based on the conditions that they are under. How many times to we do something over and above what is 'normal' in the library, only to have people frown about needing to do that for everyone. I think we need to trust in ourselves to know when we can bend the rules. When do we need to give people a report instead of pointing them in the direction. When do we need to walk people to the stacks rather than pointing. When do we need to send people some articles rather than a search string. And when do we need to give someone a timbit...well, just because.
Service will be a defining element of librarianship from here on out. These are, indeed, exciting times.
Posted by cseeman at May 9, 2008 11:01 AM