How do I plan for my arts organization during the pandemic?

#businessplanningbasics #pandemicplanning #thesamblog

Truthfully, no one really knows what to do – there are no experts in pandemic planning for the arts. All you can do is make your best guesses, listen to the best guesses of those around you and then go from there.  
Here are our best guesses: 

There is less money to go around.

It might feel a bit obvious at this point, but the expectation should be that over the next few years, the earned revenue side of things, including grants and donations, will be impacted, maybe even by a lot. People, organizations and governments will have less money to give for the next little while the economy recovers. So take some small solace in that everybody is in a similar boat, and we all need to adjust our expectations and rethink our strategies – together. For more information, check out our page of COVID-19 resources for artists.  

Now may be a great time to focus on development work. 

It’s just not possible right now to pack spaces with lots of patrons. So, depending on your situation, now may not be the right moment to invest your time and money into live performances that just won’t be able to turn a profit. Instead, invest your valuable time and effort into developing long term projects that you’ve never been able to focus on… until now!  

If you want to gather people together, you can do it, just get ready to adapt.

Audience feedback is so important for performing artists when developing new work and new directions for you and your organization. If you want to get an audience together, check out your area’s guidelines and reach out to your audience to gage how they would feel about an in-person gathering. That way you can have a better idea of your audience’s enthusiasm and you can plan accordingly. 

Step back and reflect on how you want to connect with your audience.

There are so many people out there who are finding with new and exciting ways to present their work. Try getting inspired by the work of those in your area to get ideas if you are feeling a bit stuck. You could also try collaborating with artists in different fields, presenting your work online, investing in your social media, or asking your online community to contribute to a collective project. 

Nova Scotia needs its artists, so keep reaching out and the community will respond.  

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