Thursday, July 7, 2005

July 07, 2005 Update # 8

Table of Contents:
I. Movies / Arts Attendance Correlation?
II. Allocation of Time for Executive Directors?

Hello everyone.

Just a couple of questions this week.
"And the beat goes on..................."

I. Movie Attendance Correlation?
"My baby loves the western movies.............."

There has been a lot of media coverage of late suggesting that this has been a bad year for Hollywood and that attendance at the movies is down as are the box office grosses - which got me thinking" Is there any correlation to attendance at arts events?

It would be interesting to know whether there is any correlation between downturns (or upturns) in attendance in one entertainment / lesisure time sector and other sectors. Is sports attendance down too?

II. How Do We Spend Our Time - A Quiz:
"If I had time in a bottle...................."

As I am now running a mid-sized arts organization, I have been pondering how I spend most of my days and comparing that to how I spent most of my days when I was the head of a states arts agency. I have been wondering how the Executive Directors or heads of arts organizations spend their time. Is how they spend time different from what it was, say five years ago? Is it the way they would spend their time if they had a choice? Of course, as most arts organizations have very small staffs, everyone wears multiple hats).

So, here's a little quiz for you all to take. No right or wrong answers and I can't compile the results (but you can enter your thoughts as a comment if you'd like). I just thought it might be an interesting exercise to take a look at how you spend your time and what your reactions are to that reality.

How much time do you spend in each area? Rank #1 the most, #7 the least.

1. Fundraising
2. Marketing
3. Dealing with your Board
4. Managing the staff
5. Dealing with artists / creative areas
6. Dealing with government - Advocacy
7. Managing your programs and services
8. Other

1. In meetings
2. Writing reports, applications
3. Servicing clients or others
4. Reviewing staff work
5. On the phone
6. Online
7. In transit
8. Other

Now, ask yourself:
1. Is that too much, just right, or too little in each area?
2. Is this an optimum allocation of your time, or would you rather allocate your time differently? What area do you need the most help in?
3. Is this a different allocation of your time than the way your were spending your time one, two, five years ago?

What would you gladly assign to staff if you had adequate staff -

1. Fundraising
2. Writing reports / applications
3. Marketing
4. Program oversight
5. Dealing with the media
6. Dealing with the community
7. Dealing with your Board
8. Other

Perhaps allocation of time might be a good topic for people in the arts to look at periodically, and as an issue it might suggest wider ramifications for us to all consider (e.g., if we are spending more and more time fundraising, should future Exeutive Directors' Development experience be the number one criteria in new hires? If allocation of time to fundraising today has increased, is that largely the result of the reality of declining available funding streams and the increased competition for those scarcer funds, and thus temporary, or is it permanent? If marketing is the number one or two area, should we provide more training and technical assistance to that area?)

I would like to hear your thoughts on time allocation. One thing is clear - time is a finite and precious resource to all of us, and to whatever extent we can better manage it, we stand to gain.

Have a great weekend.
Don't Quit.