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News + Updates: Environmental Analysis Theme

Share your thoughts on NAS programs!

Understanding our customers’ challenges and needs is critical to designing and delivering the best possible National Arts Strategies programs. We are conducting some research to better understand the current environment and the issues facing leaders in arts and culture organizations, and to collect some feedback about our current programs and pricing model. We are asking leaders who would like to include their opinions and thoughts in this research to please complete a quick, 15-minute survey.  Answers won’t be made public, but they will be invaluable to helping us think about how we can best serve leaders like you.

Click here to take the survey »

Thank you!


What will you gain from attending Strategy?

“We’d been tossing around the core concepts of our vision for a year but the NAS seminar allowed us the time and tools to solidify our ten year vision.” – Jocelyn Hale, Executive Director of The Loft Literary Center

Many of us have experienced the birth of great ideas presented in staff meetings and in casual office conversations. But too often, we lack the tools, time and resources to bring these ideas to fruition. The choices we make about where to focus our efforts are key to strategy and gaining a competitive advantage. So, how do we make the right choices?

We must first understand the concepts behind strategy, and how our mission and vision inform strategic objectives. There is no question that experience teaches us multitudes, but an understanding of the fundamental tools and models used by successful businesses throughout the nonprofit and for-profit sectors can expand our strategic thinking to help us best utilize our resources to support mission and vision.

Attending the NAS Strategy seminar is one step your leadership team can take towards developing a sound and actionable organizational strategy. This three-day program combines executive education with the experience of a working retreat. Under the guidance of top business faculty, your team will develop an in-depth understanding of environmental analysis, competitive advantage and strategy. You’ll learn how to objectively analyze your organization’s strengths and weaknesses, work to identify institutional goals – whether they involve a capital campaign, program development or a larger structural change – and begin to map the steps required to achieve those goals. Feedback from your peers and the opportunity to test your ideas with top academics will help you fine tune your plans and solidify your strategy. Read more about the seminar sessions »

The application deadline is September 23. Apply today »


Strategy Application Deadline Next Friday

There is just over a week left to apply for our three-day Strategy seminar. Next Friday, August 27, is the last day we will accept applications to attend this October 28-30 Nashville presentation. Apply now »

This seminar will provide your leadership team with a rich learning experience and retreat-like working session. Leading management professors will engage your team through case studies, class discussions and extensive team exercises. You will gain tools to analyze your organization’s environment, articulate the relationships between key stakeholders and integrate programmatic and economic choices so you’re able to better focus your resources on pursuing your mission. By the end of the three days, your team will have a shared understanding of what makes your organization unique and a plan for how to maximize your mission achievement in a financially responsible way.

Leadership teams of three-to-five participants will attend with an Organization Fellowship covering the $1250 tuition. A simple application process will be used to identify a diverse mix of medium and large organizations with clear goals for their participation. Additional travel support will be available to all teams from outside the Nashville area to help with the cost of travel and lodging.

For more information, visit


What is Strategy?

Let’s start with what strategy is not. Strategy is not a strategic plan. It’s not a mission, vision or goals. It’s not programming, marketing or finance.

Strategy is an organization’s integrated set of choices about what to do – and what not to do – using available resources. Strategy addresses how an organization pursues its mission using available resources and how it continues to attract the resources it needs to achieve its mission over time. A strategic plan documents how an organization intends to use its resources to implement its strategy over a set period of time. While mission and vision comprise a social logic for the organization’s existence, strategy can be described as the economic logic that complements the social logic. (more…)