Catch-Up Day & Looking Ahead

The past few days have been consumed with finishing up a very exciting project with a players’ association from an ICSOM ensemble. Before the work is coming to a close at the beginning of next month, I’ll be joining members from the group’s orchestra committee and their Local AFM president to present an outline of the project at next week’s ICSOM conference in Minneapolis, MN. All of the details about the program and which group I’m working with will be published here at Adaptistration following the conference but suffice to say, it has been a fantastic project; one which will help establish the requirements for a healthy working environment between musicians, managers, and board members. There’s much more to share but you’ll have to wait until next week (although with a little creative digging on your part, you’ll likely find more details before then).

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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