Happy New (Fiscal) Year to those who celebrate!
So, how will you work differently going forward? Here are 3 questions to help you get started:
- What have you learned from the year just concluded? An exercise: draw a line down the center of a single sheet of paper and headline one column “What Went Wrong” and the other “What Went Right.” Start writing and don’t stop until you have a total of (at least) 50 items from the season just concluded. (The columns need not be balanced.) Next, invite your Board, leadership team, staff, and volunteers to write & share their own lists. Discuss. The more explicit you all can be about what you have learned, the greater is your capacity for advancement.
- What is ONE adjustment to your future plans that is motivated by your organization’s Vision? The “mission statement” may be the Big Kahuna of a non-profit organization’s strategy for setting actionable priorities, but revisiting your VISION STATEMENT opens your organization to the fresh air of options and opportunities. With your Board and/or leadership team, invest just a single hour to this discussion: “How might we pursue our ideal in some way fundamentally different from what we are already doing?”
- Is everyone onboard? By the end of a fiscal year, you and your team are likely already deep into the execution of the next. Though arts & culture is a seasonal business, there’s rarely a lull in-between. That’s why you need to create one. Has everyone had a chance to be heard on what is (and isn’t) working? Have ideas and plans been shared and discussed broadly? It’s never enough to merely report on decisions made by others, elsewhere. Your team deserves to be meaningfully engaged in shaping your organization’s future. Let down your guard for a while and conduct some “management by walking around” in your organization. How exhausted, gratified, informed & excited is your crew for the coming year? Listen deeply. Making time for discussion now is essential for restoring the motivation and goodwill that your organization needs for the season ahead.
Best wishes for the coming season!