At the Michigan State University Libraries, we are currently dealing with a large shift in our identity and our presence on campus. We’re beginning to add new and improved services, features, and components to our dossier, but we’re finding the need to begin sunsetting services that are no longer of great use to people we serve.

However, many of these sunset-ready services have a long and storied history within our organization, and managing the traditions, dependencies, and even feelings around these changes has become an integral part of the sunsetting process.

After some difficult experiences, our organization, and my unit in particular, has made a concentrated effort to address and manage these changes more effectively. Throughout the sunsetting process, I’ve identified three key components for success: engagement, approachability, and empathy.

This presentation will cover what each of these components really means, why they are important for you and stakeholders, and real-world experiences and examples of these techniques in action.


Joshua Ethan Sanchez is the User Experience and Assessment Librarian at Michigan State University, focusing on the design, evaluation, and improvement of MSU Libraries' physical and digital spaces. When he isn't UX-ing, Joshua enjoys playing ice hockey, rooting for University of Michigan athletics (sorry, Buckeye fans), and spoiling his two dogs rotten.