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Job function trading cards, bonus edition

by Andrew Taylor

Thanks for the great comments, tweets, and e-mails about yesterday's post. It sounds like the idea of modular job descriptions for small arts organizations struck a chord among those who work in such environments, and/or design and develop HR strategy for them.

A few "bonus edition" ideas evolved from the initial idea of individual cards with discrete job functions on the front and metrics of high performance on the back. Among them:

  • Staff retreats: Using time together as a staff to create these cards, defining the range of job functions required to deliver the mission in vital and sustainable ways.
  • Reality checks: Asking staff members to place each function card with the person they think currently has primary responsibility for that function (with round two being who they think SHOULD have responsibility).
  • Redesign: Gathering the function cards that NOBODY wants, and reframing them in a way that makes them palatable.
  • Bridging: Considering those functions that seem to be perpetually discussed but never advanced, and drafting a new card to give to someone (for which, they get to give back one of their current cards).
  • Cards on the table: Displaying everyone's current hand in a public way -- outside the door of their office or entry to their cubicle -- to remind everyone who's doing what, and how they might take part in ensuring success.

I think we may have a product here. Who's with me?