Helping To Shape Museums Now And In The Future: The AIM Hallmarks Leaders And Enablers Programme

The AIM Hallmarks Leaders and Enablers Programmes – now recruiting to their second round – aim to combine insight from museum practitioners with new perspectives from the broader charities sector. This combination offers fresh ways to think about the challenges museums face, and applications are welcome from those that lead or support museums until Monday 16 January at 9am

Programme speakers include Sarah O’Grady, who helped participants in Round 1 of the Leaders programme think through some of the challenges of organisational change, and she will be working again with participants in Round 2. Sarah brings experience of dealing with a very challenging, politically charged change process, having been chair of Amnesty UK during a difficult time for the organisation, taking over when the previous chair resigned suddenly in 2013. Round 1 participants appreciated her candour and willingness to share her experiences of what it feels like to guide an organisation through difficult change and we’re sure that our new programme participants will also enjoy the chance to talk to her about her experiences at Amnesty.

From the museum sector, Janet Barnes, former Chief Executive of York Museums Trust, shared insights from her time at York in Round 1 of the Programmes, reflecting honestly on things she wished she had done differently, as well as the work that gave her most satisfaction and the approaches that helped the organisation move forward and change. Janet has spent 37 years in the museums and galleries sector with experience in both the public and charity sectors successfully leading three organisations through major constitutional change. Governance, implementing cultural change within creative organisations and fundraising are areas of particular interest to Janet and she will be working again with participants on Round 2.

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The AIM Hallmarks Leaders and Enablers Programmes – now recruiting to their second round – aim to combine insight from museum practitioners with new perspectives from the broader charities sector

Hilary Barnard and Ruth Lesirge, our programme facilitators, both bring a wealth of senior management and governance experience, and are constantly on the lookout for interesting examples and case studies which will get debate and discussion flowing. Participants in Round 1 have looked in detail at the lessons that can be learnt from the experiences of organisations ranging from Kids’ Company to the Friends of Highgate Cemetery. A session on innovation used the experiences of the Team GB cycling team to explore the theory of marginal gains – small focused improvements which, cumulatively, produce the winning performance. The approach is inspired by Kaizen, the Japanese concept of small but continuous improvement which helped the country to rebuild its car industry after World War II, and it has lessons for museum leaders in how to improve without enforcing dramatic change.

“A lot of the voices around innovation are powerful advocates for radical innovation,” says Barnard, “and radical innovation, by which we understand something brand new or a new way of delivering something like services, has its place but in percentage terms the amount of innovation which will fall in that category is actually quite small. Kaizen is about taking small steps of improvement…the notion that you take a small step then breathe a huge sigh because you won’t now have to do anything for a long time is not what we are talking about with incremental. It is the ability to be continually moving things on.”

All this combines with the practical, hands-on current knowledge of many of AIM’s Council members, including our Chair Richard Evans, Director of Beamish Living Museum of the North, to offer a rich and challenging programme which will provide useful tools and fresh perspectives to help participants shape museums for years to come.

For more information on the Leaders and Enablers Programmes, see the AIM website: AIM Hallmarks Learning but hurry, the closing date is Monday 16 January 2017 at 9am.

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2 thoughts on “Helping To Shape Museums Now And In The Future: The AIM Hallmarks Leaders And Enablers Programme

  1. Pingback: AIM Hallmarks Leaders and Enablers programme – further speakers confirmed | AIM Blog for independent museums and heritage sites

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