The beginning of a new year is a good time to take stock and assess where your organization is and where it may be going. Why not carve out some time and revisit your organization’s two principle documents of governance: the mission statement and the budget. It is the marriage of these documents that guide your organization, and periodic analysis of how they are functioning in relation to one another is critical for your organization’s health.

A clear mission statement is fundamental to the success of any cultural institution. It can be a very specific mission such as to present ongoing concerts of the works of Mozart by your internationally acclaimed ensemble. It can be a more open mission such as to produce a mix of American and European drama, as well as new works from emerging playwrights from every corner of the globe. Neither of the aforementioned mission statements is more valid than the other, but recognize they each have a distinctive purpose and we should not expect to see classical ballet of the Antarctic from either of these organizations. Whatever the mission, it should guide your decision making as you enact programming for your current year and as you plan for upcoming years.