Working Relationship with Staff

Trustees should accept these principles:

  • The staff is directed only by the library director, who interprets policies to the staff and carries out the total library program as accepted by the board.
  • Trustees should never give orders or instructions to the staff.
  • Trustees should go directly to the library director in case of any comment on the performance of staff.
  • Trustees should never interfere in the hiring process other than to agree to job descriptions and personnel policies.
  • The board is a final recourse for employees who have exhausted normal appeals channels.

Library directors should recognize these situations:

  • Trustees often know staff members very well and have a friendship relationship.
  • Trustees will ask for help from staff members they know and will bypass others.
  • Trustees answer to the community and are sometimes under great pressure from constituents to hire or to fire certain persons.
  • Trustees should not be insulated from staff but should know the positions and the programs. The library director should provide opportunities for trustees to be acquainted with the staff.
  • The director should insist on proper channels for complaints.

For further information see Working Relationship with the Director