Fueling Friendships and Meeting Milestones through the GERM

Posted: 09/05/2018 8:46:47 AM by WorkInCulture editor | with 0 comments

Photo: Participants and mentors of the GERM Program at the wrap-up meeting on April 19, 2018. 
Written by Yomi John 

In the arts and cultural sector funding is tight. So WorkInCulture created the GERM Program to support arts managers in making their earned revenue ideas and projects a reality. GERM stands for Growing Earned Revenue Mentoring. Like plant biology, our goal was to enable arts organizations to germinate ideas or existing opportunities that will evolve into sustainable earned revenue. We did this by connecting experts with professionals looking for mentorship on a range of earned revenue topics, such as membership, audience growth, space rentals, and product development. Throughout this year-long program each individual mentor team met at least once a month, either in-person or online as a number of GERM folks were from communities outside Toronto.

Our wrap-up event in mid-April was not only beneficial for the teams to meet again in person, but it was also our strategic way to help bring their partnership to a close. This event was also an opportunity for teams to network with others and learn from their experiences. We hope that through our programs participants develop relationships that grow beyond the program. One such example is of Jonathan Percival (Lake of Bays Marine Museum) and mentor Richard Toker (Rich Content & Betternxt) who became what we would call an A+ match since the two attended a Blue Jays game together. We are pleased when our mentoring teams blossom into friendships.

Since we completed the GERM program a number of our participating organizations have gone through amazing changes. For example, the Ottawa Art Gallery (OAG) celebrated the opening of their new space in late April. Additionally, during GERM, ArtsBuild Ontario (ABO) our long-time partner launched the Vendor Directory, an online resource of service providers who work with and support creative spaces. Not to take any credit from the hard work and dedication of these organizations, but having paired Meredith Berriman (OAG) and Alex Glass (ABO) with their amazing and experienced mentors Steve Solski (FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre) and Leyla Razeghi, respectively, I think we can say that WorkInCulture’s GERM program was a success!    

Want to learn more about the GERM Program? We will be publishing video interviews and additional resources and reports in the coming months.

For questions about the GERM Program
Please contact Stephanie Draker at stephaniedraker@workinculture.ca

The Growing Earned Revenue Mentoring Program is funded by the Governement of Canada


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