Atlanta Ballet held a Board Summit on October 13, 2016 for senior staff and board to discuss key organizational issues for a future strategic planning process. TDC, a nonprofit research and consulting firm, facilitated the discussion. The summit focused on addressing the following four questions:
- Are you in agreement that audience growth should be the primary goal of the next several years? Are there other key goals that need to be considered?
- What does Atlanta Ballet need to drive audience growth?
- What other organizational issues need to be tackled going forward?
- What other questions does the planning process need to answer?
The room was divided into four assigned groups, each with a mix of board and staff members. The following are the findings from the breakout session:
- All groups agreed that growing audiences should be one of the major goals considered over the next several years. Many felt strongly that growing diverse audiences should be a top priority and that Atlanta Ballet should be striving for greater visibility throughout the city of Atlanta.
- The group focused on several of the key points: 1) Test and act on programming preferences of audiences; stage productions with high levels of title recognition; 2) pursue lapsed patrons; and 3) enhance visibility through civic pride and personal connection.
- The following additional questions were identified: 1) Who should be Atlanta Ballet’s audiences? How can the organization achieve this? 2) How can Atlanta Ballet raise the needed endowment funds in the long term? 3) What level corporate support would be possible to achieve within Atlanta’s unique corporate fundraising environment?
A planning committee made up of both board and staff will launch a planning process, which will include a more in-depth internal analysis alongside external research.