Tuesday, April 24, 2007

What the Patron Really Wants

I am looking for the phone number of American Lawn and Garden Tools in Parkersburg, WV.

What the patron was looking for was the customer service phone number for Ames Tru Temper. When Googling info about the company, I found a release that the Parkersburg WV site was closed and all employees laid off in 2005. It reminds me to take the time with patrons, and suss out their query. I think sometimes I take their information request at face value, because of confidence or the line at the reference desk. I think somewhere in the back of my head, I am thinking: Save the time of reader, but not really saving the time of the reader if I am not fully exploring their information need.

And wouldn't you know... I am living what I am blogging. A young woman approached the desk, and asked for health related books. I could have easily pointed her to the 600s and said, "Health books are over there", but I asked her what topics she was interested in. She responded pregnancy, and again I asked her what sort of information she was looking for. She said there was a book, What to Expect When You are Expecting and she wanted to see if we had a copy.

1 comment:

Liz said...

Aaaah, the Reference Interview pays sometimes.