Take three reusable bags to the store and you’ll probably find four bags worth of stuff you just have to have. You will also find a way to squeeze everything into those three bags. The bags will bulge, buckle and bubble over. The handles and the seams will be strained. They will be awkward to maneuver out of the store. With sheer determination, you will lumber through the parking lot, to the train or down the street.
The idea of initiatives fitting with the library mission and/or vision is an important one. Most of us can probably make any project, initiative or great idea fit with our mission if it is something we really want to do. Whether our mission is very broad or extremely narrow in scope, many of us are masterful at making the case for why we should be doing it (whatever it may be at the moment). The result is often strained, misshapen library goals, objectives, resources and people.
When we talk about aligning initiatives with the library mission and/or vision, we are speaking to agreement, integration, and coordination. Taking on something that aligns with the library mission and vision feels natural and integral to what the library is doing or intends to do in the future. Just like when the items in the bag are properly align, nothing is spilling over, bent or stretched out of shape. There are not few awkward roll outs, or lumbering implementations.
Of course, this also means that there will be some things that may have to be left in the store or the library conference.