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Retreat 2 — what you can expect

Ahead of our intensive residential marketing leadership programme, Retreat 2 on 12 — 15 March, we asked trainer Jo Taylor a few questions about what attendees can expect from the programme.
1)      What do you think makes a good leader?

A good leader inspires passion and action in others. Good leaders corral people around a common cause and unite them in a joint effort so that everyone is working together for the same end. A good leader empowers everyone to make their individual contribution and celebrates their part in the success story.


2)      Are there any barriers to great leadership that are specific to the arts sector ?

It is easy in organisations who have broad portfolios — and are under pressure to drive and diversify income — to lose focus.  Good leaders will think strategically and remain focused on the big underlying idea — while not underestimating what you’re asking of people or diminishing the detail.

This means to constantly inspire people with the potential of the art to enhance lives, so that this passion is what drives the organisation.  With good leadership, the barometer for success will not be box office returns, till receipts or counting heads but in valuing, prioritising and cherishing the impacts your experiences have on audiences.

Good leaders in the arts will remain unequivocally vision led, at the same time as being relentlessly audience focused. They champion the art and the audience equally. The result is a team where everyone has confidence in the artistic vision and embraces the audience wholeheartedly.


3)      What would you say is the biggest hurdle to someone undertaking their leadership journey and how will Retreat 2 help?

  • Achieving the above requires the ability to focus and great communications skills.
  • Lack of confidence can be a barrier to both of these strengths.

Retreat 2 will give you a solid grounding in the relationship between the different facets of the strategic planning process, including some practical tools to navigate these discussions with your teams. It also gives you that all too rare time to reflect on your influencing and interpersonal skills.


4)      What is the one thing you hope people will take away with them

That strategic planning gives the best framework for more creativity, experimentation and something about leadership……


Retreat 2

College Court Conference Centre, Leicester | 12 — 15 March

AMA members: £995 + VAT

Embracing Diverse Audiences — what you can expect

Ahead of our online workshop Embracing Diverse Audiences — embedding diversity across your organisation on 7 December, we asked speaker Mel Larsen a few questions about what attendees can expect from the session.

1) What does diversity mean to you?

  • an awareness and core value that leads to taking action on developing Inclusion and Equality 
  • respecting and valuing differences between us all such as culture, ethnicity, faith and identity
  • being aware of the 9 protected characteristics, socio-economic status and associated opportunities/challenges
  • being aware of intersectionality and associated opportunities/challenges

2) What challenges do arts organisations face when trying to reach a more diverse audience?

  • being aware of and honest about their own privilege and bias
  • making assumptions about new audiences
  • being worried about causing offence
  • wanting to make a difference but not having the authority
  • not knowing where to start, how to find and communicate effectively with certain target segments
  • making diversification of their audiences a priority

3)  How can arts organisations embed diversity in across their work?

  • Attendees will find out some of that on the workshop but in summary it’s about attitude, structures, planning and communication

4) What is the key thing you hope people will take away with them from your workshop?

  • Inspiration
  • Commitment: wanting to make a difference
  • Confidence: realising that it is something they can get started on and learn as they go
  • Tips: useful info that will help them get started

Embracing Diverse Audiences — embedding diversity across your organisation

Online | 7 December | 10.30am — 12.30pm

AMA members / Arts Council England NPO: £45 + VAT

Non-members: £115 + VAT

The first steps on your journey as a leader


Imagine you are sat at your desk on a Monday morning. Are you ready and raring to go or are you day dreaming about the next stage in your career? Are you engaged with your organisation’s plans for the future and the team around you or do you think there is more that you can be doing to help your company, and team, thrive? It sounds like the time is right for you to start thinking about becoming a leader but where to begin?

A quick search online brings up numerous sites, all professing to be able to teach you how to lead. They offer multiple frameworks and talk about differing styles of leadership. Soon your head is swimming and all this helpful advice starts to look like gobbledygook.

If all of this sounds familiar, you are not alone. Preparing for the next step in your career can seem like you are about to climb a mountain. But fear not, the AMA will be your guide, starting your expedition into the unknown by hosting Learn to Lead, an informal and focused workshop based in London at NCVO and led by Mark Wright, Director of People Create Ltd. on 20 November.

Workshop speaker Mark Wright

The aim of the workshop is to help you develop as leaders, whether you are taking your first steps into management or have been working as a head of a team and want to gain fresh perspectives on leadership.

The workshop will get you to ask yourself big questions, like:

—      What kind of leader do I want to be?

—      What benefits do I want to bring to my organisation?

—      What is the next step in my journey as a leader?

And will give you advice on teamwork, such as:

    How to nurture engaged and creative colleagues

—     How to create a trusting and collaborative team

—     How to better understand those around you and how your behaviour impacts them

Ultimately, delegates will walk out of the workshop with a better understanding of what their leadership offer is and greater confidence in their leadership style.

Our sector needs to develop agile and diverse leaders so why not take the first step in the rest of your career and join us at Learn to Lead.


Learn to Lead — insights into effective leadership

20 November @ 10:00 am – 4:30 pm

AMA member rate: £175 + VAT

Non-member rate: £250 + VAT

Header image

Image courtesy of Samuel Scrimshaw at

Body image

Image courtesy of Mark Wright

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