Organized with a Capital "O"
So how do we, emerging arts leaders, embrace the new creative economy, but not become what Angela McRobbie described in her essay “Everybody is Creative: Artists as New Economy Pioneers” as “a society of lonely, mobile, over-worked individuals for whom socializing and leisure are only more opportunities to do a deal”. How do we stay afloat, while helping to drive innovation and keep a diversity of (popular as well as thoughtful, well-crafted) art alive in our communities?
What do we do first?
Get organized. As individual arts and culture workers each of us must build our own capacity for risk and to make mistakes. Build it, try it, fix it is my new mantra. I am working to be both a planner and doer, to be ambitious and creative, while building in time for self- reflection, evaluation and course correction. I’ve also found that risk and learning can be supported through shared leadership, mentorship, collaboration and coordination.
The other task is to create the opportunities in our lives or workplaces to integrate the many wonderful ideas shared about leadership, work/life balance and new business models. In some instances this can happen in established organizations or institutions if the leadership is willing. In other instances, new ventures are needed. But planning, strategic planning I think it important to make these new ventures effective. Young people’s penchant for self-organizing can lead to regional and national networks that can be leveraged to create new space for leadership, professional and experimentation in the sector as a whole.
These are ideas we have built into the development of our EL network. We will be a platform for our participants, a space to pilot ideas and try something new.