Get Your Organize On

Up until a few days ago, I had not heard of Airtable but thanks to a recent overview at ArtsHacker by Ceci Dadisman, I now know it’s something I want to learn more about.

You can never have too many options when it comes to optimizing your workflow and improving efficiency. According to AirTable, their platform is “part spreadsheet, part database, and entirely flexible.” It does seem to have two increasingly important must-haves I look for in organizational tools:

  • Cloud based
  • Easily shareable with platform and non-platform users alike

I’m very curious to know if anyone out there is currently using AirTable and if so, what are your observations and feedback.

In the meantime, check out Dadisman’s article to see how she leverages it for arts admin based marketing and devo tasks:

Let’s say you’re managing an advertising campaign and you’ve got your print ad schedule in Airtable with each insertion having its own row. You can create a column where you can upload the final proofs to the exact row that corresponds with the insertion in question. Let’s say you’re using it to manage grants. You’ve got each grant in its own row. You could set a column where you upload all of the application documents and another where you put the final submitted file. See where I’m going with this?

It’s Like Excel On Steroids

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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