Have You Considered On-Site Professional Development?

I’m off to Palm Beach, FL for three days of on-site client work at The Society of the Four Arts and Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens.

Adaptistration People 062While I love the benefits reliable teleconferencing deliver vis-a-vis improving direct client support and reducing the necessity for on-site work, there’s always something special about being able to work alongside the professionals you’re serving.

If you’ve never considered the value of bringing one of your key providers in for on-site work, you’re missing out on one of the most beneficial, not to mention economical, professional development activities you can consider.

No doubt, vendor-specific conferences are a more common target for professional development funds. But they simply aren’t the same as having an expert from your web developer, ticketing provider, digital marketing, or customer relationship management database provider sit down with your team members.

When implemented properly, on-site visits leave your team members inspired and produce improved efficiencies. From an human resources perspective that means less employee burn-out and higher marketing/development returns.

Pro Tip: if more than one arts org in your area use the same provider, invite them to participate and cost share to reduce overall travel and lodging expenses.

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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