Speak up. Credential yourself. Identify the expertise that you have. When you give someone an answer or provide them with the perfect pathway to finding what they need and they say “Thanks so much!” your reply should not be, “Oh, that’s okay, it’s my job.” You should respond, for example, with, “Of course! It’s what I do, and I have specific expertise in materials for children at that grade level.” Or, “Let me know what else you need; health care content is my specialty.”
I think ALA President Julie Todaro makes a lot of sense in this column. I know I’ve said “That’s just my job” when I could have specified what makes me qualified to provide answers. I appreciate this encouragement from President Todaro and think it might help push back against the idea that anyone in a library is a librarian. What do you think?