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Tips for Starting a Local Emerging Leaders Network
Local networks come in all shapes and sizes. What to start one in your community? Use these tips and strategies from established networks on how to launch a network or bring your network to the next level. It usually takes three to six months of meetings and planning to overcome the initial stages of starting one from scratch. If you want to aim for a really successful Creative Conversation in October, you should start launching your network in April or May. Some networks form really fast and others take more time. Find the points below that work best for you and your community.
- Find like-minded people. Convene a core group of committed professionals who want to work on creating a local network. Ideally, this group should represent a broad cross-section of arts and cultural organizations in your community.
- Develop lists. Discuss ways to you can share contact information, listservs, and newsletters to get the announcement out.
- Host an easy, social event. A happy hour at a local bar works well or perhaps a meet and greet at your local library, bookstore, or coffee shop.
- Collect information at the door. Have a sign up sheet or a bowl where people can drop their business card.
- End with action steps. Explain what you are trying to do and why. Ask if there are people interested in helping you make it happen. Announce date/time of next event, if planned.
The Emerging Leaders Network targets arts professionals with less than 10 years of experience in the field, including current students, and professionals who may be coming into the field as a subsequent career. However, Americans for the Arts welcomes individuals from every age range and experience level to participate. The only requirement is that participants have the desire to enhance their leadership capacity and the drive to develop innovative, effective, and responsible management practices.