Making a Difference in Communities

The Engage program provides community-centered professional and organizational development that focuses on leadership training for small to midsize arts and cultural organizations. Using a combination of workshops, coach consultations, and peer-to-peer learning opportunities, Engage works with participants to govern more effectively, become more fiscally astute, and develop strategies to address community needs. Development of these skills ensures long-term sustainability and improved community impact. Engage strengthens participating arts organizations and arts leaders, amplifying an arts ecosystem that supports the wider community.

Engage is highly customized to address the needs and existing challenges of every organization and art leader. Participating organizations receive one-on-one coaching, workshops on a diversity of topics that reflect current trends in the field, and the opportunity to develop strong bonds with their peers, sharing resources and solving problems together.

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For more information about the Engage program, please email engage@maaa.org

Upcoming Programming

Managing Workplace Conflict

Join us for part two of Mid-America Arts Alliance’s Engage workshop, Managing Workplace Conflict with Karen L. Jones. In the first workshop, Jones led participants in defining conflict within their organization, identifying their personal and collective conflict styles.

In this workshop, through guided discussion and activities, participants will better understand best practices for addressing conflict and develop action plans for conflict management while analyzing their own conflict style. Join us November 15, 2021, 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. to learn how to incorporate these tools into your workplace. Missed the first workshop? No worries! For more information and to RSVP, please visit www.eventbrite. com

Webinar Resources

Our October program was Managing Workplace Conflict with Karen Jones. How do you and your organization effectively manage and resolve conflict? In this workshop, participants learn how to define conflict within their organization, identify personal and collective conflict styles as well as how toxic disagreements impact an organization, and more.

In September, Mid-America Arts Alliance’s Engage Program, in partnership with Creative Arkansas Community Hub & Exchange, presented Stretch Your Operational Wings: Tools for Assertive Engagement with Valerie Wade.

When small to mid-size institutions are navigating partnerships with larger institutions, there are often assumed imbalances in power and influence because of larger budgets or more staff resources. However, these institutions bring immense value, and they often have closer relationships with key players for special projects. Stretch Your Operational Wings: Tools for Assertive Engagement is led by Valerie Wade, founder and principal consultant of Lynnfield Historical Consulting.

In this workshop, Wade demonstrates how a number of tools can help all sized institutions forge mutually beneficial partnerships. Together, institutional leaders learn how to approach engagement opportunities and potential partnerships with confidence and strategies for success. All institutions are welcome. Viewers from larger institutions will benefit from this workshop by gaining perspective on the experiences of smaller and mid-sized institutions with whom they may collaborate.

On July 22, Mid-America Arts Alliance’s Engage Program, in partnership with Creative Arkansas Community Hub & Exchange, presented Nonprofit Collaboration: Real, Relevant, Right Now: Brand Research, Messaging, and Design with Surale Phillips, Cheryl Baldwin, and Laura Morse of DRMTM.

DRMTM will teach viewers how to ask the right questions and use quick and easy research to build a brand that makes connections and will offer powerful tools to create a brand of purpose, clarity, integrity, and relevance in today’s arts and culture climate.

On Mar 25, Mid-America Arts Alliance’s Engage Program, in partnership with the Texas Association of Museums, presented Shared Authority and Partnership in Nonprofits with Omar Eaton-Martinez, about the importance of co-stewarding stories and initiatives with communities that we serve. Eaton-Martinez guided participants in identifying and cultivating partnerships, defining the differences between ownership versus stewardship, how to have a “seat at the table,” and being transparent about your expectations from partners.

On February 25, in partnership with Creative Arkansas Community Hub & Exchange (CACHE), Engage presented Nonprofit Finance 101 with Lisa Gertsch. Gertsch reviewed everything small organizations need to keep on top of their financial situation and stay in compliance: accounting software; grant tracking; employees versus contractors; state and federal filings; how to forecast your cash balance, and much more.

On December 3, Danielle Fanfair joined us to present Confusion to Clarity: Expanding Intelligences. To be an entrepreneurial creative is a complex balance of mastery, competency, emotional intelligence, work ethic, and burnout-avoidance. Knowing your contribution and accepting other people’s unique differences and experiences can increase morale, and motivation, deepen relationships and grow the quality of the contribution you make to the world.

On November 12, Dina Bailey of Mountain Top Vision again joined us to host Practicing Resilience: Practical Steps for DEIA Plans. The workshop focused on the practical application of your DEAI plans through case studies, practical tips, and other resources.

On Friday, November 6, we offered The Murky Middle: Sustainable Self-Care for Creatives. This webinar aimed to normalize collective trauma responses for creatives as well as provide tangible coping frameworks. Using real-life examples, metaphors, and experiential exercises, we explored the unique challenges of these trying times to better understand why familiar coping may be failing us.

On October 8, we offered a Mindfulness and Self Compassion Through Creativity workshop with Ajana Therapy and Clinical Services. Participate in full below, and email communications (at) maaa.org for a copy of the participant’s handbook.

On September 17, we offered the session Are You Asking? A Fundraising “Playbook” During COVID with Fayruz Benyousef from FBC Consulting.  Watch the workshop in full below. For closed captioning info, please email Communications (at) maaa.org

We presented Practicing Resilience: Activating Your Anti-Racism and DEAI Commitments on July 17 with Dina Bailey of Mountain Top Vision. Watch the workshop in full below. For closed captioning info, please email Communications (at) maaa.org.

We presented Messaging the Moment with Jessika Davidson on Thursday, August 13. While managing the unexpected during the current health, economic and racial pandemic, how do art organizations do this online, be authentic, and stay true to their mission? You can also download a Messaging Framework Checklist and an Equity Lens Audit provided by presenter Davidson.