At our organisational and financial resilience event in 2019 at the Birmingham Hippodrome – with 70 leaders from the cultural sector – antibiotic resistance was one of the scenarios on the table. Participants imagined how venues would close and we would be distanced from each other – and how the cultural sector would need to reach out to support audiences, communities and colleagues.
What to do with this now that COVID-19 has happened? There are many future scenarios to consider. Rather than having a single strategy or plan for – for example – next financial year, now of all times leaders (executive, boards…) need to develop a response to multiple potential situations in parallel.
- We’re running webinars on Resilient Planning, based on a Resilient Behaviours Framework that we co-designed with 1200+ people working in the UK’s cultural sector and informed by our work under Arts Council England’s business and financial advisor framework. Let us know if you'd be keen to participate.
- At the same time, you need to deal with the day-to-day issues of a newly virtual organisation. With us all working from home, virtual leadership, governance, teams and collaboration is 20% technology and 80% organisational culture and new ways of working. We’re running practical webinars, bringing insights from our own experience (more than 10 years!) as a remote working organisation using digital to collaborate across a network of associates, partners and clients. Let us know if you'd be keen to participate.
- Using digital to support your enterprise activities and your redesigned business model is essential to your organisation’s survival – keeping staff, supporting your networks of collaborators and continuing to fulfil your mission in these difficult times. All of our digital resources – including the Digital Culture Compass – are here. We are relaunching our Data for… and Digital for… event series as webinars with content focused on financial resilience. We'll be contacting those of you already signed up with updates very soon.
- Finally, how are you going to stay in contact with audiences during this time of lockdown? You might be pondering streaming or putting digitised assets online. But beyond that, how will you run participatory projects and workshops... or even substitute for those invaluable informal conversations you have with visitors? We can help you design new user-centred methods and ways of working – not to replace the in-person experience but to open up new possibilities for collaboration, learning and engagement.
The COVID-19 virus is the same wherever you are in the world. In fact its lack of variation (so far) is something that makes a vaccine likely to work. However, the response to the pandemic varies from place to place.
Recently, Learning & Participation Consultant Ashleigh caught up (virtually) with Lucy Turner, Early Years Producer at The Whitworth Art Gallery.