What do you do at the Art Gallery of Alberta?
I’m the Head of Marketing, Communications and Development and I lead the team responsible for our external communications, marketing/brand efforts, events and fundraising/sponsorships.
What skills do people in your position need?
As this position blends several departments, you need to be a bit of a generalist but typically these roles require post-secondary education in marketing, PR, and communications. Skills and experience should include solid writing skills and experience in project management, brand, events, corporate sponsorships and fundraising. Experience working with non-profits, artists or cultural institutions is a huge asset, as while you many understand how to ‘market’, you need to understand the nuances of operating within this specific work culture and understand that the reality of non-profits is you must be a hands-on tactician/doer and a creative, strategist.
What makes your job fun?
Variety, flexibility and the ability to be creative
What challenges do you face?
Tight resources would be the biggest, including staffing, as there is a lot we would like to do and know we should do, but with such a small team you are often working on the things that are ‘on fire’ leaving little time to do the all the other vital things you want/need to do. This includes having time to think creatively and implement new strategies. This is a pretty typical reality for marketing departments all over the world so you need be able to manage heavy workloads and really prioritize as not everything on the list can be done.
What’s a typical day?
Well there is no typical day😊 but every day would involve writing, proof reading and copy editing for our various communications platforms and vehicles. Then on a weekly basis, strategic planning, project and change management, staff coaching/management, event planning, sponsorships and… having fun! Honestly, our work can be stressful in this profession, but it’s important to remember we aren’t saving lives and we have pretty cool jobs so… let’s try to have some fun and enjoy all that we get to do. Everyday should involve a giggle somewhere.