Friday, September 12, 2008

Multi-District Workshop Part I: Introduction

Serving Older Adults: From Large Print Books to Gaming

Allan M. Kleiman

Multi-District Workshop

September 9, 2009

Serving Older Adults

n Good Morning

n Thank You

n Unique Perspective on the Topic

n There is a shift in the Aging population happening all over the world!

n Opportunity for us not a challenge!

Serving Older Adults

n Who in this room is a boomer?

n What does that mean to you?

n How do you look at growing older?

n Different from your Parents? Or Grandparents

Serving Older Adults

n Who are “they?”

n Currently, 35 Million Seniors

n By 2030, 78 Million Seniors, close to 20% of the Population

n That’s 1 in 5

Serving Older Adults

n How do we translate this demographic change into positive library services?

n What are the implications?

n But it is more complicated than that?

n Question the notion that there is such a thing as “library services to older adults”

Serving Older Adults

n What is Library Service to older adults now?

n What should it be in the future?

n Is it on the same par as Children’s Services? Teen Services?

Serving Older Adults

n Basis for Service Today……

n ALA RUSA RSS Guidelines for Library Service to Older Adults (2008)

n Established Broad Principles for Service

Serving Older Adults

n How could you turn around your Library and create such a Service?

n Why do we Have to?

n Can’t we just do the same thing we’ve been doing for the last 100 Years?

n Who Would Know the Difference?

n ------The Boomers Would!!!!!!!

Serving Older Adults

n Boomers have always thought that they can change the world

n Shift of what it means to grow older

n Change in what retirement means

n Change in almost all facets of American Life

Serving Older Adults

n What the Boomers are beginning to do is create a New Life Stage Between Careers and Old Age

n Something that really has not previously happened!

n And everyone in this room is going to be an active participant in the process

Serving Older Adults

n ‘the baby boomers will turn their golden years into an intense time of social activism, volunteerism, and lifelong learning.” “In retirement, the Woodstock generation will still be trying to change the world.”

n (Prime Time by Marc Freedman)

Serving Older Adults

n How will this effect our libraries?

n The Boomers “force” us to look at Library Services to Adults and Older Adults in a different way!

n Now--3 Groups of Older Adults

n 40-60, 60-80, 80-100

n Active vs. Inactive

Serving Older Adults

n Now……we need to create library programs that serve the 3 generations:

n Boomers, Older Adults and the Elderly

n We need to continue what we have been doing plus expand to serve this “new generation!”

Serving Older Adults

n The Boomers give us an opportunity to change the library from a passive entity to one which is a catalyst

n The library will become the center of town in every community--

n to be the place for public debate and discussion

n to allow for individual instruction

n allow for group learning and discovery

Serving Older Adults

n We want to HOOK the Boomers in Now!

n Many have not used the Library in years

n Re-introduce the Library/Services

n We need to get the Boomers Out of Barnes & Noble!

n Boomers are going to redefine retirement and we want our Libraries to be a part of that

Serving Older Adults

n Boomers will be looking for Places for

n Information

n Recreation

n Education

n Socialization

n What Better Place Than Your Library?

Serving Older Adults

n Most difficult Boomer to attract?

n Men or Women?

n Have not used the library very much

n Rarely took the kids to the library

n Bought paperbacks at B&N

n Library collections are women oriented

n Men’s Books are Fewer

Serving Older Adults

n What do the Boomers want?

n Want it NOW!

n Don’t Want to Wait!

n Expect Good Customer Service!

n Can go Elsewhere!

n Are Internet savvy!

n Don’t really need libraries!!!!!!

Serving Older Adults

n …..this post-World War II generation, healthier than their parents, will expect the 21st century library to be a cross between the traditional library, a 24/7 learning center and a community college.

n Allan M. Kleiman

Serving Older Adults

n “Boomers won’t be content with a collection of large-print books, and all the library staff will have to be involved in providing services, not just the Outreach Staff. There will be a new kind of adult and older adults services created to lure the Boomers into Libraries.” Allan M. Kleiman

Serving Older Adults

n “Boomers will expect creative, exciting and stimulating programming and exhibits, enhanced technology, small meeting rooms and large spaces for discussions.” Allan M. Kleiman

n Libraries need to acknowledge this new exciting challenge that’s coming and get ready and plan for it………..

Serving Older Adults

n So this is an opportunity for Revolution

n So this is an opportunity to change

n So this is an opportunity for us to develop a new vision of what growing older is

n So this is a new direction in library services to the baby boomers, older adults and the elderly

Serving Older Adults

n Now, we know all the facts—

n What Can we do?

n What are some ideas to rethink your library and the services that we provide?

n Here are some suggestions-----

Ideas--The Physical Library

n Layout

n Circulation/Self-Check Out

n Coffee/Food/Prune Juice Bar/Teas

n Conversation Areas

n Drive-thru window

n Policies….are they “senior” friendly


n Traditional plus--

n Web based marketing

n E-Mail (not text message)

n RSS Feeds

n Podcasts

n Cell Phones

n Other Technology….we don’t know

Ideas--Marketing, cont.

n Begin Now-----Reaching Out to People at their Workplace

n Begin to borrow ideas from the Boomer Gurus----

n Ken Dychwald,

n Mary Furlong,


n How will they Change?

n Traditional plus

n 24/7 Library

n E-Books (According to Overdrive, Readers are 44 Years old and 70% Women)

n E-Music, E-Video

Ideas--Collections, cont.

n Retirement

n Financial Security

n Travel, Leisure

n Caring for Aging Parents

n 2nd Career Information

n Volunteer Opportunities

n Course/School Opportunities


n Baby Boomer Headquarters (

n Reinventing Aging: Baby Boomers and Civic Engagement (Harvard School of Public Health)

n Civic Ventures (

n Libraries for the Future (


n Boomer Project (, Matt Thornhill) Newsletter

n WHCOA 2005 (

n ALA WHCOA Site (

n John Beck, Got Game (How the Gamer Generation is Reshaping Business Forever) and look at OCLC Newsletter No. 267

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