Taking A Week Off

After a few unexpected curve balls over the weekend, I decided to take a week off of blogging but if anything big happens by way of the brewing labor disputes, I’ll likely pop back in for an overview.

Having said that, I would be remiss if I didn’t point out an article by Joshua Kosman in the 1/19/2021 edition of the SF Chronicle that examines San Francisco Symphony’s new digital streaming service at sfsymphonyplus.org.

I’m especially interested in this as it’s one of the initial digital offerings out of the gate designed to generate earned income. And when it comes to diversifying earned income, the pandemic has been a huge wakeup call for nonprofit performing arts organizations.

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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