A good employer knows how to motivate valuable employees. Although the Board and library director do not have a typical employer/employee relationship, the Board still has a role to play in keeping the director motivated to do his or her best job possible.

Different people are motivated by different things. The Board will have to learn what the director values and desires. For instance, does he or she value a challenging position above all else? Is recognition important? What about child care, additional staff members or increases in pay? After asking the library director what is important to him or her, and why, the Board can try to find a way to make it happen.

One simple thing that helps keep people motivated is acknowledging their accomplishments. Be specific. Rather than saying, "Good job," for example, say, "I like how you handled that angry customer. Your patience, willingness to listen and determination to solve the problem kept the situation from escalating." By being specific, you show respect and caring.