In his article, Colvin (2000) discusses the shift in thinking about the role of people in the workforce. He discusses the theory of Taylor’s Scientific Management developed by Frederick Winslow Taylor and its contribution to work efficacy in the 20th century. He goes on to explain how this type of management system is less relevant for the 21st century, as we move from a manual labour force to one of information and knowledge.
So how does Colvin’s article relate to school libraries today? The 21st century has brought with it the ‘information age’ which sees information and knowledge as fundamental and desired skills within the workforce. Colvin (2000) calls this a ‘knowledge based economy’, which is strongly supported by the use of information. As Colvin (2000) aptly points out ‘the whole world is changing’. Those working within the information sector are well-placed to help people develop the necessary skills to be able to actively work within and contribute to this economy. School librarians and information specialists play a crucial role in ensuring that the students of today, who will become the workforce of tomorrow, are able to locate, access and use this information to engage in the participatory work culture that is both required and valued from 21st century managers.
Colvin, G. (2000). Managing in the info era. Fortune, 141(5). Retrieved from http://archive.fortune.com/magazines/fortune/fortune_archive/2000/03/06/275231/index.htm?iid=sr-link1.