ADRIENNE HORN ON
"Amidst great change,
The climate for museums today is one of rapid change - technologically, economically, demographically, etc. However, sustainable museums that are embraced by growing, engaged communities continue to balance the following, basic priorities:
- Remaining true to a clear, well articulated mission. So often museums get off course, presenting exhibitions and programs that have little to do with their fundamental purpose. Or, staff may chase grant dollars without considering whether fulfilling the grant will take them away from the reason the museum exists.
- Presenting a compelling experience to attract new and repeat visitors. Given the competition for leisure time, programs and exhibits need to be interesting and unique. Staff need to think about what it means for a museum to be a destination, how the regional community can become more deeply engaged, and to answer the question, "What is our 'wow' factor?"
- Collecting feedback from the audience. Community members and tourists can offer both a quantitative and qualitative measure of success. Knowing what visitors feel about the museum helps staff to understand if the museum is considered of value.
- Promoting museums as stewards of our culture. Successful museums maintain the highest standards in scholarship and care for their collections and assets.
- Remembering that a museum is also a business and needs to earn a profit that can be reinvested in future success.
- Museum leadership needs to have a comprehensive strategic plan or roadmap that staff and board use to build the future organization while aligning human, cultural, and financial resources. The key is first conceptualizing the plan, then bringing it to fruition.
Are your museum's fundamentals in order? Contact Museum Management Consultants for assistance with Assessment, Strategic Planning, Business Planning, Audience Research, and Executive Search.