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W. I. F. M. (What’s In It for Members?)

Jerry Smith, GM, First Stage | 

Recent strategic planning efforts by the Arts Consultants Canada’s Board of Directors resulted in a sharpened focus on its mission (To advance and promote ethical, excellent and effective consulting in Canada’s arts and culture sector.); not only would ACCA respond to the professional development needs of its membership – current and potential – but it would also shine that light of experience on the ongoing health and development of the sector. To respond to these two goals, ACCA has been using a combination of strategic approaches, including professional development for members and the sector, as well as networking events.

Membership survey responses confirmed that member and supporter needs were demanding, complex and varied; thus, the Programming Committee has responded over past seasons with a mixture of “big picture” issues (e. g. “Blurring Lines Between Commercial and NFP,” “Where is the Next Generation of Arts Manager,” and the most recent “Online Seminar on the New Canada Not-for-Profit Corporations Act .”), networking and knowledge sharing, and skill development (“Your Consulting Practise and Social Media”). These topics have been developed and delivered through a mixture of online webinars, guest speakers/panels, and networking. (Members can access notes/slides/videocasts HERE)

Recently, under the direction of ACCA stalwarts Jennifer Murray and Debra Chandler, Toronto/GTA members enjoyed the opportunity of participating in a pilot ‘Knowledge Exchange / Networking’ event. In a relaxed setting (i. E. bar), several key themes were explored around consultants and their practise: “How to Monetize My Expertise?” and “Collaborating/Partnering on RFPs re Strategic Plans;” “Managing Projects with Multiple Bosses (including Volunteer Committees” generated ideas, and a few laughs as well. Feedback from the event generated “terrific camaraderie, the absolute desire to continue this dialogue in similar events, and the sense that there is help available to enhance members’ current strengths and opportunities.

The Board of ACCA is committed to being responsible, and responsive; watch your inboxes for an upcoming membership Survey Monkey link, and tell us what to do.

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