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Corporate and Business Planning in Arts and Cultural Environments

The ex-Australian Federal Treasurer, Peter Costello, once famously declared: “You’re either in business, or you ain’t!”  When this throwaway line was directed at the not for profit sector in the context of a newly enacted goods and services tax, it revealed something of the chasm of mutual misunderstanding sometimes evident between organisations that exist for the public good and those that exist to return profits to shareholders.  The real truth, as always, is to be found somewhere in the middle.

Both sectors have much to learn from each other and when crossovers occur through effective corporate/cultural partnering, the skills and passions of one can be transferred into the other.  A good example of this can be found in the development of Corporate Social Responsibility.  Born out of the not for profit sector and the triple bottom-line of government business units, it is now seen as one of the golden pathways to long-term sustainability for the business sector.  On the other side of the coin, the strategic, corporate and business planning processes that have long guided the world of commerce have now become fundamental to success within the not for profits.

Whether it be for the development of realistic action plans to achieve shared missions, for building audiences or for achieving success in attracting government grants and corporate dollars, effective planning processes are essential in both building workplace cultures and in reaching project or organisational goals.  Planning itself is largely a technical process that requires the guidance of experienced personnel who can gain an understanding of the specific nature of an organisation’s mission and can tailor the process to fit.  When it comes to wading through the many options that will ultimately define the direction an organisation takes, creative risk management will determine whether it’s business as usual or a future that is exciting and expansive.

Cultural Consulting can help you make that difference, whether it’s a small project or a twenty year strategic plan.