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News + Updates: human resource management Theme

How can culture drive strategy?

“Culture eats strategy.”

This sentiment is one commonly expressed at executive education programs and among business leaders to convey just how important culture can be to organizational success. Developing an organizational culture that supports your mission and drives your strategy is a task that goes beyond the human resources department. It is the responsibility of leaders across the organization to think about how to create a structure and environment that allows employees to thrive in their roles and ensure that you meet organizational goals.


Invest in your organization this holiday season

Why not skip the gadgets this holiday season and instead pledge to invest in your organization’s future? Apply to attend one of our two upcoming Business of Arts and Culture team seminars – Strategy, March 7-9, 2013 in San Francisco and Managing People, March 21-22, 2013 in Chicago.



Application now available for Managing People

National Arts Strategies will present Managing People, a Business of Arts and Culture seminar, March 21-22, 2013 in Chicago. Managing People is designed to give teams an in-depth understanding of how organizational culture can drive mission achievement by making the most of an important and valuable resource: people.

During this two-day seminar, led by Cornell University professor Diane Burton and Stanford Graduate School of Business professor Jesper B. Sørensen, teams will discuss case studies that illuminate key aspects of organizational culture and how it can influence a business – for better or for worse. They will explore frameworks to help them think creatively about building teams and fostering an organizational culture that will support mission and strategy, and apply these frameworks in examination of their own organizations and practices during team exercises.

Apply now to bring your team to Chicago next March. You can name your own tuition to attend this seminar, and NAS will offer travel support for teams attending from outside the Chicago area.  Applications will be accepted through Friday, February 1. Learn more about Managing People or apply now »



Fellowship Recipients for Managing People Seminar Announced

Twelve teams will attend Managing People, September 8-9 in Seattle, through NAS 2011 Organization Fellowships. All fellowship recipients were selected through a competitive application process and will attend the seminar at no cost. In addition to a $4,500 fellowship covering the full-tuition for the seminar, participants from outside the Seattle area will also receive up to $600 per person to help offset the travel and lodging costs. (more…)


Learn to innovatively use your biggest resource in NAS’ Managing People seminar

While there’s a great deal of talk about innovation throughout the field, it tends to focus on programs, attracting audiences and finding new revenue streams. But what if you started with thinking innovatively about your biggest resource – your people? What are their strengths and how can you creatively use them to propel your success? Are there things about your organization – for instance the way jobs are designed or particular aspects of the culture – which prevent your staff from being able to work to their full potential?

The NAS Managing People seminar is your leadership team’s opportunity to explore these issues with two top management professors. For two days, your team will engage in case studies, class discussions and team exercises as you work through a process to align your organization’s culture and infrastructure with your mission and strategy. You’ll be pushed to think creatively about how both formal and informal components of your organization impact how your employees achieve your mission, including what attracts them to your organization and what keeps them motivated and engaged while they’re there.

Apply now to bring your leadership team to Seattle, September 8-9 for Managing People. All participating teams will receive an Organization Fellowship covering the full tuition for a team of 3-6 and must apply to attend. Additionally, teams from outside the Seattle metropolitan area will receive up to $600 per person to help with the costs of travel and lodging.

The deadline to submit your application is June 24. Apply now »


Work with two experts in organizational behavior during Managing People

Join Professors Diane Burton, Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations, and Jesper B. Sørensen, Stanford Graduate School of Business, for the NAS Managing People seminar in Seattle, September 8-9. During this two-day working session, these dynamic teachers will engage your leadership team in case studies, class discussions and team exercises. Together you will examine how your organization’s culture and formal policies can align with your strategy and enable better mission achievement.

Diane BurtonDiane Burton is an expert in organizational theory, human resource management and entrepreneurship whose research focuses on the effect of organizational systems and practices on organizational performance and individual career outcomes. She has published articles in numerous academic journals including American Sociological Review, the American Journal of Sociology, and the Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization Science. Prior to joining Cornell, Professor Burton taught at MIT Sloan School of Management, Harvard Business School and Stanford Graduate School of Business. Professor Burton earned degrees from Carnegie Mellon and Harvard Universities before receiving her Ph.D. in Sociology at Stanford University.

Jesper B. Sørensen  is a sociologist who specializes in the dynamics of organizational and strategic change, and their implications for individuals and their careers. His research on firm outcomes has focused on the impact of organizational structure and culture on organizational learning, performance and innovation. His work on the dynamics of teams has led to new insights concerning how people respond to changes in the racial composition of their workgroups. He has won awards for both his published work and his teaching, and has served as both Associate and Consulting Editor for the American Journal of Sociology, is on the Editorial Board of Administrative Science Quarterly, and is a Senior Editor of Organization Science. Professor Sørensen earned an A.B. magna cum laude from Harvard University and a Ph.D. in Sociology from Stanford University.

Managing People is being presented with Organization Fellowships covering the full cost of tuition for all participating teams. Teams from outside the Seattle metropolitan area will also receive up to $600 per person in travel support to help with the cost of travel and lodging. All teams must submit an application by June 24 to be eligible to participate.

For more information about the seminar and who should attend, visit


What motivates your staff?

Many jobs in nonprofits arts and culture organizations are very demanding – requiring long hours and often for less money than people would prefer. So what is it that keeps your staff motivated to go the extra mile to meet your mission? This is a question that a lot of people have been asking. There’s a growing body of research about what motivates people to give their best, and the answer is probably not what you’d expect.

For most of your staff, giving them more autonomy, mastery and purpose will actually help them perform better. But how exactly do you ensure that your team has the freedom to be self-directed with a strong sense of purpose, and has opportunities to improve their skills and mastery? During Talk with an Expert: Attracting, Motivating and Retaining Staff, Dr. Diane Burton will explore your questions about how to creatively design jobs and institutional policies that will help give your staff what they need to stay motivated.

Professor Burton is an expert in human resource management at Cornell University. She specializes in organizational theory, entrepreneurship, and the affect of organizational systems and practices on organizational performance and individual career outcomes. During the October 21 Q&A session, she’ll explore these topics with a small group of 12 participants. Prior to the event, you’ll have access to a recording in which she discusses the unique management challenges of arts organizations, what attracts people to organizations and how to create “good jobs” that keep staff motivated and focused on mission achievement.

Participation is strictly limited to allow for the highest levels of engagement. Team participation is strongly encouraged; the tuition is $95 per login.

Register now »


How do you keep your staff motivated and mission-focused?

The current job market is challenging. Even though your employees may not be jumping ship, they may not be giving you their best work. So how can you reinvigorate your staff to achieve your mission, especially when additional monetary rewards are an unlikely option? Join NAS and a leading expert in human resource management, Diane Burton Ph.D., October 21, 1-2 PM to explore your team’s questions about what attracts people to your organization and how you can design jobs and policies that reinforce the things people value most about working for your organization.

Talk with an Expert: Attracting, Motivating and Retaining Staff is an hour long Q&A session featuring, Professor Burton of Cornell University. In advance of the live event, your team will have access to an online recording in which Professor Burton shares insights about what attracts people to jobs – and what keeps them there – as well as strategies for building on that knowledge to design jobs that enable you to achieve your mission and keep your staff satisfied.

This discussion is especially relevant for senior management teams, and team participation is strongly encouraged. Participation is limited to 12 organizations to allow for the highest level of interaction, and tuition is $95 per organization. Register now »


Just Announced: Two New Online Events

The next two online events will focus on issues that every arts and culture leader faces: motivating staff and negotiation. Talk with an Expert: Attracting, Motivating and Retaining Staff is a small group Q&A session featuring a leading professor of human resource management. Negotiation: Strategies to Follow and Pitfalls to Avoid is a Closer Look webinar that will put you in the classroom of a leading expert on negotiation and team dynamics. Team participation is encouraged for both of these events, which cost $95 per login.

Talk with an Expert: Attracting, Motivating and Retaining Staff

October 21 | 1-2 PM EDT
As organizations are continually asked to do more with less, it’s critical that you be able to retain your staff and keep them engaged and motivated. During this hour long Q&A session, Professor Diane Burton of Cornell University will explore your questions about what makes your organization an attractive place to work and how to use job design and policies to keep staff motivated. Prior to the live session, your team will be provided with a recorded presentation by Professor Burton on management challenges specific to arts organizations and creating “good jobs” that are fulfilling for staff and meet the needs of your organization. Register now »

Negotiation: Strategies to Follow and Pitfalls to Avoid

November 11 | 1-2 PM EST
Leaders use negotiation as a business tool every day to advance their organizations — in labor agreements, contracting with partners and suppliers, and in some cases with boards of trustees. Professor Margaret Neale of Stanford University will provide your team with tools to help you negotiate more effectively, from assessing the cost and benefit of a particular negotiation to determining which negotiation strategy will be most appropriate and effective. Professor Neale will lecture for 45 minutes, providing you and your team with the opportunity to submit questions at the end of the session. Register Now »