Module 6

"Leading Strategical Initiatives"

"Leading Strategical Initiatives"


The purpose of this module is to provide performing artists with methodologies to look for opportunities or to come up with ideas and take the initiative to add or create value in activities that both respond to communities’ needs and fulfil learners’ artistic goals.

Watch and discuss

By the end of this module, you should be able to...


  • describe how to initiate value-creating activities individually and with others.
  • state the importance of individual and group responsibility while undertaking tasks in value creating activities.  


  • show initiative in seizing opportunities in communities to create value.
  • analyse ways to delegate responsibility appropriately.


  • encourage others to take the initiative in solving problems and creating value within a team or organisation.



The action of leading a group of people or an organisation to do the right things. This is done by building an inspiring vision, motivating, setting direction, managing, coaching and creating something new.

There are different styles of leadership. The most common are: autocratic, democratic, laissez-faire, transformational, charismatic, bureaucratic, servant, and transactional. 


A plan of action designed to achieve a long-term or overall goal. It involves defining activities and allocating resources to meet objectives, bridging the gap between “where someone is” and “where someone wants to be”.

It implies mission and vision statements, environmental scanning, strategy formulation, strategy implementation and strategy evaluation.


The ability to initiate things independently. It is related to take the opportunity to act or take charge before others do it.

It also can be defined as a strategy intended to resolve a difficulty, improve a situation or take a fresh approach to something.


The state or fact of being accountable for something within one’s control or to blame for something. 

It is about doing the things one is supposed to do and accept the positive or negative outcomes of their actions.

How to initiate a value-creating activity/project individually or with others in performing arts?

You can initiate a value-creating activity or project by…

  • Designing a strategy.
  • Being proactive in the search of opportunities.
  • Thinking about addressing and preventing problems.
  • Developing a team mentality.
  • Sharing your ideas. 
  • Requesting feedback.
  • Being decisive. 
  • Keeping a positive attitude.
  • Being self-promotional.  

Value chain in the performing arts

What is the importance of individual and group responsibility while undertaking tasks in an activity/project?

The importance of individual and group responsibility

  • It avoids problems
  • It avoids wasted resources, energy and time
  • It increases productivity and efficiency
  • It improves relations
  • It creates an enjoyable working environment 
  • It keeps the focus on the goals
  • It drives to better results
  • It contributes to the satisfaction of all parties with the final outputs
  • It is essential for a successful activity/project

Filling a gap as a self-employed international artist and arts educator

Oumar Sagna, a musician and dancer from Senegal, grew up surrounded by arts, specially music. He started dancing and playing instruments very young, practicing every day, all day. Over the years he played with large groups in various venues, which provided inspiration to him. Oumar was living a happy life but it was not making him money. 

A drumming group exchange with the UK, in 2003, changed his life. He realised that schools in Europe do not offer arts education like they do in Senegal, thus finding a cultural gap to fulfil. 

Since then he works as a musician and dancer that uses his cultural traditions to enrich other cultures by teaching them to youngsters and communities all around the UK. As he also realised that there are many subcultures in the UK and that the needs of youngsters/communities vary from area to area due to that, he adapts the delivery of his artistic knowledge to his audiences.

Leading cultural/art initiatives

  • Like Oumar from the case study presented before, did you ever lead a cultural/art initiative? If yes, what was its added-value? How did it take place?
  • Thinking about your environment, which opportunities or gaps are there that you could fulfil with your artistic knowledge? 
  • Did you ever share with other artists your ideas and got their feedback? Why/Why not?
  • How easy was/how do you think it is to keep a positive attitude while implementing new initiatives in the performing arts sector? Which strategies can you use to involve people – professional colleagues and audiences – in your ideas?

Seizing performing arts opportunities in communities


  • Nonprofit, public, and commercial arts-related organisations
  • Retail arts venues – bookstores, music stores, film theatres, craft and art supply stores
  • Non-arts venues – parks, libraries, associations, and centres with arts and cultural programming
  • Festivals and parades
  • Arts-focused media outlets – print and electronic, including web-based venues
  • Schools


  • Amateur art-making
  • Collective/community art-making
  • Arts training for adults
  • After-school arts programmes for youngsters
  • Audience participation
  • Purchase of artistic goods – musical instruments, DVDs/CDs 
  • Talks about arts
  • Celebration of holy days
  • Sharing of worldwide arts traditions
  • Theatre of the oppressed

Delegating responsibility appropriately

Leaders need to delegate because they can’t do everything alone. At the same time, they empower their teams, build trust, and contribute to each individual’s professional development. It also helps to identify who is best suited to tackle tasks or activities.

  1. Focus on the goals and priorities 
  2. Choose the right person for the task
  3. Explain why you are delegating
  4. Provide the right instructions, resources and training
  5. Empower to make decisions
  6. Motivate
  7. Follow-up and provide feedback
  8. Show your appreciation

Leading an activity in my community

Action Plan

Identify opportunities

Which opportunity or problem in your community could you address making use of the performing arts?

Think about the added-value that you could bring to your community using your artistic competences.

Describe tasks

List all the tasks that would be necessary to implement your activity.

Include also tasks that you could allocate to other persons. 

Delegate responsibilities

Consider all the tasks you listed and identify persons from your network or community with whom you would like to collaborate on them.

Bearing in mind the competences of each person, assign them the tasks you think are most suitable for them.