Paul Nicholson – Strategic Planning

January 9, 2018 | Author: Anonymous | Category: Arts & Humanities, Performing Arts, Theatre
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Oregon Nonprofit Leadership Conference 2012

Workshop on Strategic Planning April 24, 2012

Presenter: Paul Nicholson

Workshop on Strategic Planning April 24, 2012 Outline First Section: Introduction • Introductions/mapping • What is strategic planning? • Elements of a LRP Second Section: The Process of Planning • Who should be involved? • Challenges • The process in detail

Third Section: The Plan Components • Mission • Vision • Values • Situational analysis • Goals/Strategic areas • Action programs

• Assumptions/Financial projections • Supporting information • Discussion; Questions and Answers Fourth Section: Operationalizing and Executing the Plan Discussion / Q & A

Elements of a Strategic Plan • Mission • Vision • Values • Situational Analysis

• Goals • Action programs • Assumptions/Financial Projections

• Supporting information

The Process of Planning Who should be involved? • Internal

• External

How Much Time is Involved?

The Plan - Components • Mission • Vision

• Values • Situational Analysis • Goals • Action programs • Assumptions/Financial Projections • Supporting information


Mission Statements 1983-1987 The Oregon Shakespeare Festival is a professional theatre company dedicated to production of the plays of William Shakespeare and other works of high literary quality. The style of production is dictated, first and foremost, by the demands of the text and the vision of the author, secondarily by the talent and sensibilities of the company, and finally, by contemporary taste and experience of the audience. 1988-1992 The Oregon Shakespeare Festival is an association of professional theatre artists, artisans, specialists, and other interested people dedicated to production of high quality of William Shakespeare’s plays and other works of literary and theatrical value. We seek to be a significant cultural force with a heterogeneous audience drawn form a wide geographical area. Our style is dictated, most importantly, by demands of the text and the vision of the author as interpreted by the director. It is further conditioned by the nature of our playing spaces, the sensibilities and talents of our company, and the taste and experience of our audience. 1994-1998 The mission of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival is to bring to live the essential event of the theatre: the creation of a passionate communion between artist and audience. The Festival exists to expand and enhance that communion, to illuminate and broaden the boundaries of shared human experience, and to explore and embrace that which is unique to the theater. Using the plays of William Shakespeare as our standard and inspiration, we are committed to producing theatre of the highest artistic quality while maintaining and developing a skilled and flexible professional company; we are committee to performing in repertory a broad range of plays chose to celebrate and investigate the breadth of vision and the depth of insight that we find in Shakespeare; we are committed to seeking and nurturing a divers, active audience, drawn from a wide geographical area, a an essential creative partner. 1999-2003 The mission of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival is to create fresh and bold interpretations of classic and contemporary plays in repertory, shaped by the diversity of our American culture, using Shakespeare as our standard and inspiration. 2003-2007 The mission of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival is to create fresh and bold interpretations of classic and contemporary plays in repertory, shaped by the diversity of our American culture, using Shakespeare as our standard and inspiration. 2009-2013 Inspired by Shakespeare’s work and the cultural richness of the United States, we reveal our collective humanity through illuminating interpretations of new and classic plays, deepened by the kaleidoscope of rotating repertory.


Vision Statements 1988-1992 The shared vision of the theatre, what it is and what it can become, must be constantly clarified and sharpened for all the Festival’s constituent elements. We must be willing to move within reasonably restricted and achievable budget, and we must move with a vivid recognition of priorities. The proud history of achievement extending over half a century will not be advanced over the next five years through mere growth of audience or personnel but through discipline, dedication, and devotion. 1999-2003 The Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s vision is to create theatre of extraordinary quality in which we proceed with daring to fulfill our artistic dreams. 2003-2007 We envision the Oregon Shakespeare Festival as a creative environment where artists and audiences from around the world know they can explore opportunities for transformational experiences through the power of theater. 2009-2013 OSF will balance its roles as a major arts organization, national leader and pre-eminent resource for the theater field, with being nimbly responsive to challenges and opportunities, both artistic and economic. Anchored by an inspired company creating exceptional art, we will be guided by thoughtful resource stewardship and a deep commitment to education and audience engagement.


Values Statement These are the values we hold at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. They are at the center of everything we do, and describe how we work together. While we recognize the need for balance among them, these values guide us in all our decisions: Excellence: We believe in constantly seeking to present work of the highest quality, expecting excellence from all company members. Inclusion: We believe the inclusion of a diversity of people, ideas and cultures enriches both our insights into the work we present on stage and our relationships with each other. Learning: We believe in offering company members, audiences, teachers and students the richest possible learning experiences. Financial Health: We believe in continuing our long history of financial stability, making wise and efficient use of all the resources entrusted to us. Heritage: We believe that the Festival’s history of almost seventy-five years gives us a heritage of thoughtful change and evolution to guide us as we face the future. Environmental Responsibility: We believe in making responsible choices that support a sustainable future for our planet. Company: We believe in sustaining a safe and supportive workplace where we rely on our fellow company members to work together with trust, respect and compassion. We believe that the collaborative process is intrinsic to theatre and is the bedrock of our working relationships; we are committed to the Festival’s Communication Credo. We encourage and support a balance between our lives inside and outside the Festival.

Situational Analysis •

Environmental Scan Internal External

SWOT Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities Threats

Break Analysis into appropriate areas Artistic/Programs Audience/Clients Facilities Finances Organization

GOALS • Aspirational • SMART Specific Measurable Achievable Relevant Timely

Oregon Shakespeare Festival 2009-2013 Long Range Plan

Key Strategic Areas 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14.

Artistic quality Program development Use of technology Audience/client growth Outreach/Touring Education activities Facilities development Financial stability Contributed Income development Endowment Fund growth Company development Diversifying the organization Board development Connection with the community

KEY STRATEGIC AREAS 1. Artistic Quality • What is our aesthetic? • What is our present artistic level? How do we rank? • What is the level we can realistically aim at? • How do we know when we’ve reached the next level? • How do we continue to get better? • What risks can we take? 2. Program Development • What programs are effective? Ineffective? How do we define effectiveness? • What should we not do? • What programs does our community need that we should fulfill? • What programs should be expanded? • If we had half a million dollars, how would we spend it? 3. Use of Technology • To what degree do we want our productions filmed for TV, Video etc? • What is the role of CD ROM technology? Opportunities? • How will technology affect our productions in the future? Administration?

4. Audience Growth • What long term pricing philosophies should we adopt? • To what extent do we anticipate diversifying our audience? • What changes do we see taking place in our audience over the next five years? 5. Touring • What are the benefits/costs of touring? • Where should we tour? • How would we make touring an integral part of our operation? 6. Education • What is the role our education programs play in preparing our audiences? • What about the role they have in developing audiences for the future? 7. Facilities • Are our present facilities adequate? • What do we need to do our best work? • How much money will it take? Can we raise that amount?

8. Financial Stability • What resources will be necessary in the future to support the artistic vision? • What level of working capital reserves should be maintained in the future? • Is our budgeting process accomplishing what we want? 9. Contributed Income • What is our current balance of Earned and contributed income? Should this change in the future? • What challenges do we face in developing contributed income? 10. Endowment Fund • What level of support should we aim for from an Endowment Fund? • Can we raise the money necessary to produce that support? 11. Company Development • How do we provide the most creative environment for people in the company to do their work? • How do we balance experience and loyalty with innovation and new energy? • How do we constantly achieve a freshness if we regularly focus on the classics? • How diverse can we be? What steps should we be taking to create a more diverse work space?

12. Diversifying the organization • How do we define Diversity? • How diverse is our organization? How diverse is the work we present? • How committed are we to diversity in our staff, Board, audience and volunteers? • Who are the leaders in diversity? What can we learn from them? 13. Board Development • How will our Board change in the future to reflect our organization’s vision? • How do we maintain cohesiveness and involvement? • How active should our Board be in fund-raising? • What information does our Board need to be effective? 14. Community Development • What are our existing community partnerships? • How do we sustain those partnerships? • Are there new community groups with which we should be partnering?

Long Range Plan Assumptions

Artistic Number of Productions Number of Performing Weeks Number of Actor Weeks Equity % of Actor Weeks Number of Actors (Average) Average Salary $

Audience Number of Performances Theatre Capacity Total Season Capacity Growth in Capacity Attendance as % of Capacity Total Attendance Ticket Prices $ Average Ticket Price $ Change in Average Ticket Price %

Facilities ($000) Expand Production Building Theatre Equipment Initiative Security System Upgrades Other Capital Expenditure

Finances Expenses Growth Rate % Salary & Benefits Increases over Previous Year % Investments (Av.) $000 Return on Investments % Contributed Income Growth (over previous year) % Numbers of Members Payout from Endowment Fund $000

Organization Staffing Levels (Full-time Equivalents) Board Composition Volunteers

Financial Projections

OREGON SHAKESPEARE FESTIVAL LONG RANGE PLAN FINANCIAL PROJECTIONS 2009-2013 EARNED INCOME Ticket Sales Other Sales Educational Programs Publications Concessions Interest Endowment Payout Other Total Earned Income

2007 Actual

2008 Actual

2009 Budget





15,487 206 223 266 311 216 1,494 522 18,725

15,797 172 225 285 312 (296) 1,579 685 18,759

15,115 156 218 291 294 93 1,503 567 18,237

14,836 153 218 286 287 46 1,337 494 17,657

15,422 159 219 291 287 72 1,216 538 18,204

16,279 168 220 307 290 150 1,157 536 19,107

17,233 178 221 325 297 208 1,182 589 20,233

8,400 6,077 2,408 829 821 1,331 1,006 2,530 283 213 130 528

8,643 6,212 2,475 854 847 1,372 1,037 2,605 290 218 155 559

9,107 6,504 2,548 880 873 1,422 1,068 2,683 298 225 170 665

9,425 6,796 2,623 907 899 1,475 1,101 2,764 307 232 175 903

123 24,679

126 25,393

132 26,575

138 27,745

OPERATING EXPENSES Artistic Production Marketing & Communication Education Development Box Office Plant Management Administration House Management Concessions Capital Equipment & Projects Depreciation Artistic Operating Fund Exps Contingency Total Operating Expenses

8,303 5,987 2,552 837 821 1,332 1,101 2,574 281 221 130 567

8,785 6,438 2,679 836 850 1,396 1,152 2,832 303 220 137 571


10 26,209

8,829 6,243 2,313 807 799 1,309 985 2,464 290 215 64 566 350 25 25,259









1,955 416 2,245 205 214 439 457 5,931

3,188 365 1,440 64 205 279 662 394 6,597

3,244 370 1,362 92 75 294 776 459 350 7,022

3,244 370 1,362 92 75 294 776 459 350 7,022

3,309 377 1,389 94 77 300 784 459 400 7,189

3,441 392 1,445 98 81 315 823 473 400 7,468

3,613 412 1,517 103 85 331 864 487 100 7,512







60.3% 33.5% 25.2% 71.2%

59.8% 35.0% 27.8% 70.6%

60.1% 34.0% 28.5% 70.4%

60.7% 34.0% 28.3% 70.6%

61.3% 34.3% 28.1% 70.6%

62.1% 34.0% 27.1% 70.1%


-4.3% -3.6%

-1.8% -2.3%

3.9% 2.9%

5.6% 4.7%

5.9% 4.4%

CONTRIBUTED INCOME Memberships Bowmer Society Major Gifts Other Annual Fund Support Groups Government Foundations Corporations Artistic Opportunity Fund Total Contributed Income OPERATING GAIN/(DEFICIT)

FINANCIAL RATIOS (% of Total Expenses) Ticket Revenue Artistic Costs Contributed Income Payroll Growth Ratios Ticket Revenues Operating Expenses


Examples Of Supporting Information Appendices • Outline of programs • Attendance/clients served – numbers revealing trends – statistics • Past financial information: Activity Statement, Balance Sheet • Education activities – numbers • Comparisons with other similar organizations – Key statistics • Facilities – maps, square footage allocation • Board Structure • Board Committees • Organization chart • Volunteer groups

Operationalizing and Executing The Plan

Paul Nicholson Executive Director, Oregon Shakespeare Festival Paul Nicholson assumed the position of Executive Director of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in November 1995. He joined the Festival in 1980, serving as general manager for 16 years. A New Zealander, Paul was the administrative director of Downstage Theatre, New Zealand’s largest and longest-established professional theatre, for six years. Prior to becoming involved in professional theatre, he worked for ten years in the corporate world as a planning manager, management accountant and systems analyst. Paul has a graduate level business degree from Victoria University, Wellington, New Zealand. He has been a guest lecturer at Stanford University, Victoria University of Wellington and the University of Oregon, and is a frequent speaker at the Oregon Non-profit Leaders conference. He has consulted with many U.S. arts organizations and is actively involved in arts advocacy for the state of Oregon, currently serving on the board of the Oregon Cultural Advocacy Coalition. He was a founding faculty member of the Western Arts Management Institute and in 1984 became an adjunct professor at Southern Oregon University. In 1991, he was featured in the PBS series on management, Nothing Ventured. He has participated on many panels for the National Endowment for the Arts and the Theatre Communications Group (TCG). Paul has served or serves on many local boards including Southern Oregon University Advisory Board, Ashland Rotary, Ashland Community Hospital, the Ashland Chamber of Commerce and La Clinica. On the national level, he served for many years on the board of TCG. 2012 marks his 33rd season at OSF.

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