Boss Report Card

Tarri Ryan

Company

Mountain View Library

Title

Division Manager for Youth and Outreach

Grade Boss

Overall Report Card

5 reviews

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Employee Development

Communication

Integrity

Employee Empowerment

Knowledge

Authenticity

Reviews

Overall Report Card

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Comment

She makes somewhat random decisions. She doesn't ask any of the people involved. This creates inefficiencies and it fosters low morale. She also kind of spies on people which is just creepy. I don't believe the "A" rating came from an actual employee. They write: "I have seen Mountain View Library improve significantly under her leadership!" I have seen the exact opposite. I have seen significant deterioration.

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I cannot recommend Tarri Ryan at all. Unqualified, incompetent, unknowledgeable, unprepared, unprofessional, careless, disorganized, unhelpful, uninspiring, petty, vengeful, and lacking in leadership skills. Doesn’t seem to comprehend some of the very basics of public librarianship in general or the basic practices of this library specifically. Tarri’s staff and colleagues succeed through their own skills and knowledge in spite of her, not because of her. In fact, some wonder what she does in her office all day. (She doesn’t work out in the children’s or teen areas where the public are; we’re not sure she even knows how to.) She could retire tomorrow and her staff would carry on just fine, and probably even do better without her constant hovering and micromanaging. Micromanaging is maybe the wrong word because she really doesn’t manage and actually has a very chaotic, unpredictable style: she avoids important things that she just doesn’t want to or isn't qualified to deal with, while wasting time obsessing over low priority details. I can’t point to a single positive, innovative, or meaningful change Tarri has made to the library. (Overall there’s a lack of vision and innovation.) Sometimes she will decide to change something random for no reason and no benefit to library patrons; it seems like just flexing or busywork so she can be seen as having accomplished something. Her communication is notoriously bad, to the point that staff have to ask each other what she means in her vague, inaccurate, mistake-ridden emails. (Often, nobody can figure it out.) That is, if she even bothers to send and reply to emails. Her signature move, when she doesn’t understand something that she, as a manager, should have mastered, is to ask staff to “give me some input surrounding this” so that someone else has to explain it, or to complain that a thoroughly documented library practice or policy “needs more transparency” (translation: explain my manager job to me like I’m 5 because I have no idea how this library is run or what my coworkers do.) She’ll claim something is urgent but then it sits on her desk forever. When someone asks her something point blank, she’ll change the subject or say “We can discuss that later” but she doesn’t follow through. You can always tell when she doesn’t know what she’s talking about. You get the sense that she’s faking her way a lot of the time. She’s clearly in over her head. Staff morale has plummeted; good people leave rather than work with her. No wonder this library has so many vacancies. Her own staff and the other managers, and even people from other divisions, have to pick up the slack from her. She doesn’t train her staff thoroughly on things like the online catalog, vendor interfaces, or library customer relationship management because she doesn’t understand them herself. Again, her staff has to figure it out or ask others. She seems to be very thin-skinned and takes things very personally; she will reassign or threaten to reassign dedicated, talented staff who are just trying to do their jobs because they innocently did something that got under her skin. It’s a very outdated 1950s management style of “the manager is always right and the peons dare not have ideas of their own.” (She was hired in March 2020 so perhaps there weren’t many applicants to choose from. She certainly was not promoted from within the library.) She actually tells staff not to ask each other for help or collaborate with each other; she wants everyone to go to her instead. (Problem is, she’s often so clueless that staff know it’s pointless to ask her anything. She’ll just tell you to ask someone else after all.) She will flat out ignore/refuse to speak to staff who did nothing wrong except offend her sense of superiority somehow. This is unacceptable; a manager should do better. A manager should buck up and summon all their emotional maturity to interact professionally with their coworkers instead of sulking. Imagine a workplace where a manager (at her pay scale!) pointedly avoids and ignores people like it’s middle school. (Good for the staff who don’t have to talk to her, but it makes for an inefficient, dysfunctional workplace.) There’s a real mean, petty streak to this behavior although she will claim to support and care about her staff. Talk about a lack of self awareness. Her staff should be managing her. Do yourself a favor and avoid this so-called manager and the library administration that allows this to continue.

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Comment

As someone who has worked with Ms. Ryan before I was surprised to see the previous review as I couldn’t disagree with it more. She is a wonderful boss and is someone who I have witnessed to be very kind and caring to all her staff. I have seen Mountain View Library improve significantly under her leadership! I truly loved working with her

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