Do You Really Think It Is Good For You?

Joe Patti, the blogmeister over at Butts In The Seats, posted an excellent article the other day about some fundamental issues with arts research. In particular, he puts a nice twist on the issues raised by intertwining some of his recent experience with managing his presenting house.

A good bit of the qualitative data research these days for arts marketing is, at best, middling and even more troubling is that more and more organizations seem to be skipping over the necessary aspect of qualitative research and jumping right into hypothesis driven quantitative studies without having a firm foundation of data to work from.

It’s an issue which has been paramount on my mind lately (more on that later) and I’m glad to see there are other competent arts bloggers out there pondering the same topic.

If you haven’t read Joe’s article yet, go spend a few moments and give it a once over.

About Drew McManus

"I hear that every time you show up to work with an orchestra, people get fired." Those were the first words out of an executive's mouth after her board chair introduced us. That executive is now a dear colleague and friend but the day that consulting contract began with her orchestra, she was convinced I was a hatchet-man brought in by the board to clean house.

I understand where the trepidation comes from as a great deal of my consulting and technology provider work for arts organizations involves due diligence, separating fact from fiction, interpreting spin, as well as performance review and oversight. So yes, sometimes that work results in one or two individuals "aggressively embracing career change" but far more often than not, it reinforces and clarifies exactly what works and why.

In short, it doesn't matter if you know where all the bodies are buried if you can't keep your own clients out of the ground, and I'm fortunate enough to say that for more than 15 years, I've done exactly that for groups of all budget size from Qatar to Kathmandu.

For fun, I write a daily blog about the orchestra business, provide a platform for arts insiders to speak their mind, keep track of what people in this business get paid, help write a satirical cartoon about orchestra life, hack the arts, and love a good coffee drink.

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