Introducing EmcArts 2021

Now available: New digital programs for adaptive re-imagining across the arts

Open access and greater inclusion for our sector at a time of historic change

“For the first time in a long while, the future feels inventable, rather than inevitable.”
Aislinn Rose, Artistic Director, The Theatre Centre, Toronto (Staging Change participant)

Responding to the demand for our distinctive processes of adaptive change in the arts, we are delighted to make our new digital programs available for individual leaders, organizations and funders who recognize the value of facilitated adaptive work.

Adaptive re-imagining of how organizations operate in tandem with their communities, and how funders support their grantees, has become the most central and urgent demand on the road to recovery and rebuilding.

In tackling complex adaptive change, our work addresses the organizational mindsets, assumptions and submerged structures that hold in place current ways of acting; and provides frameworks for change from within, radical and authentic responses to complex challenges.

In order to be intentional and pro-active in how they address all this complexity and uncertainty, we’ve found that artistic and executive leaders, Boards, artists and organizational staff throughout the United States and Canada are looking to strengthen and flex the new ‘muscles’ they need for long-term resilience.

Our new programs are delivered on multiple platforms and interlaced with real-time, facilitated team and cross-organizational learning.  They are custom-built to meet the needs of your organizational and leadership development journeys.  Each program offers participants personalization, community and safety in the online environment – a place you can connect with others, build trust, do real work, and be seen.

EmcArts digital programs available in 2021

All quotes are from recent program participants.

New Pathways to Resilience: Webinar Series for individuals of any affiliation

A great way for nonprofit leaders to rapidly engage about adaptive change in response to complex challenges, and proven ways to succeed in adaptive work.

Our partners are using this 4-part Series as a cost-effective way to test the waters for more in-depth programs.  2021 Program cost for a large cohort: $4,500 per Series; for single organizations: $450.

“It was fabulous, and I am so grateful for your work helping us navigate through uncertain times.”
“Outstanding. A wholly relevant, useful, and well-done presentation. Deepest thanks, with great appreciation.”

Please contact us for more information and scheduling.

Building Adaptive Capacity: Interactive Digital Workshop Series to introduce adaptive change

The 10 two-hour Workshops engage a cohort of arts or community organizations in strengthening the ‘muscles’ needed for adaptive re-imagining, beyond immediate relief support.  This work cannot be left until ‘stability’ returns, or incremental change work is completed.  Now is the time to seize emerging opportunities to do things differently, for new levels of engagement with communities.  This program is best suited for cohorts of 10 to 15 organizational teams to maximize collective learning and accountability and could include a combination of arts and social-sector organizations.  At a 2021 cost of $25,000 for funded cohorts; we can also help create cohorts of interested single organizations.

“The program provided a framework for staff and board to organize our thinking, structure our activities, home in on the challenges, and describe the change we are hoping to affect.  Most importantly, the program has united us around a vision that is focused on serving our community.”
“Having dedicated time to thoughtfully examine and work through strategic issues in a curated, guided way is incredibly important and also incredibly rare!”

Please contact us for more information and scheduling.

Rehearsing Adaptive Change: Single Organization Program to begin practical adaptive work

For organizations ready to embark on a major adaptive initiative, this program is the place to start: A series of linked opportunities to embrace community perspectives on adaptive re-imagining of the organization.  First, through an Experimentation Team of internal and external stakeholders gathering for 6 two-hour sessions.  Second, via Network Perspectives sessions that bring new and diverse voices into the conversation.  And finally, through action research – testing multiple responses to a major complex challenge through “small experiments with radical intent” in the community.  Our partner funders are finding this program an excellent capacity-building opportunity for a cohort of select grantees or those receiving GOS.  The program is also useful for single organizations as they prepare to onboard new and returning staff by creating a foundational practice in adaptive change.  2021 cost: $10,000 per organization.

“We have given ourselves permission to fail. We know we are supported when we try something that might or might not work, and that’s liberating.”
“We have learned through this work that the power of small experiments can lead to larger investigations and experiences. Our adaptive practices are now showing up in operations across the organization.”

Please contact us for more information and scheduling.

Adaptive Leadership Courses: Practical training for the next wave of nonprofit leaders

Serious professional development is hard to find in the nonprofit sector, outside of technical training.  Yet the demands on the next generation of organizational and program leaders are unprecedented.  Our Adaptive Leadership Circles introduce adaptive leadership in complexity.  Our ALACI program (Adaptive Leaders as Cultural Innovators) offers an extended engagement in the practice of adaptive leadership, and includes 6 hours of 1-on-1 executive coaching for each participant.  The work is integrated with each leader’s ongoing practice, serving as a rehearsal ground for the future.  2021 costs range from $7,500 to $35,000 for a cohort of up to 12 leaders.  We are currently focusing on first-time Executive and Artistic Directors, with new cohorts being offered in May and September 2021.

“I have come away from the ALACI process with a newly found sense of liberation and a shift in my identity. Going in, I saw my leadership tied to my role [in the organization].  Coming out, I see myself as a leader, regardless of where I choose to work.  The skills and beliefs I have are within me.  I am free to apply them as I choose.”

Please contact us for more information and scheduling.

Adaptive Facilitator Training: Practical training program in facilitating adaptive change

There is little well-developed adaptive process facilitation work in the arts and nonprofit sector, across the United States or Canada.  Local capacity for this work can be advanced by training experienced consultants to lead adaptive processes, and by involving them directly in either local or (potentially) geographically distant EmcArts programs.  The aim is to create a network of skilled adaptive facilitators available to the field throughout both countries, who can take forward the distinctive methods and practices that support adaptive re-imagining across the whole nonprofit sector, democratizing access to these services.

Our team can work with a group of up to 6 Adaptive Facilitators at a time, either from a single community or geographically dispersed.  The work involves an orientation to adaptive work, sharing of specific techniques structured to different stages of an adaptive journey, and mutual learning across the cohort to integrate the new approaches with each participant’s existing practice and areas of focus.  Each participant also gets the opportunity to become involved in the delivery of a relevant EmcArts program, working alongside an experienced EmcArts practitioner.  The program cost in 2021 is $15,000 for a cohort of 6 Adaptive Facilitators; we can also help create cohorts of interested consultants at a cost of $2,500 per participant.

“I wanted to send you a huge thank you for leading our [training] series this past year. I believe the work EmcArts is doing is critical to our sector, and the tools we gathered through the series of workshops and sessions were well conceived, professionally delivered, always engaging, challenging, and learningful. And, importantly, they were community-building all along the way. Thank you.”

Please contact us to discuss any of these programs and possible funding strategies to build your capacity for innovation and adaptive change today!

ArtsFwd is an online community of arts and culture leaders committed to doing things differently in their organizations in order to stay relevant and vital in a changing world.