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Questions you might ask yourself

  • How well does our plan define our goals and targets in relation to our vision?

  • How have we ensured that the whole organisation understands the plan and their role in its implementation?

  • How do we review our achievements against the plan?

  • Is our plan reviewed and advanced on an annual basis?

  • Does our plan include all aspects of our work, including our learning/participation programme?

What success looks like

  • We have a clearly defined plan that is approved by the board, and all our staff understand their part in its implementation.



The AMA is the national umbrella body for arts marketers and audience development workers, with a membership of around 1,900. It offers professional development opportunities, publications and networking. Parts of the site are available to members only, while some content, including downloadable material, is offered free.

  • The AMA offers a free download of 'The Thinking Big Essay' by Stephen Cashman, which explores strategy and how to develop it, before going on to examine marketing strategy and planning.

Arts Council England

Arts Council England is the national arts development agency for England, supporting a range of artistic activities from theatre to music, literature to dance, photography to digital art, carnival to crafts. It distributed both grant-in-aid and Lottery money.

Proven Models

Proven Models is a database of management models grouped under headings including leadership and management, communication, strategic management, personnel management, etc. Content is free, but you can register and join the site's online community.

Scottish Arts Council

The Scottish Arts Council is the lead body for the funding, development and advocacy of the arts in Scotland. Useful information on this site includes an extensive publications list.

Strategy and Impact website (NCVO)

The Strategy and Impact website is run by the NCVO (National Council for Voluntary Organisations) and aims to help you to "know where you are going and how well you are doing, grow, by achieving even more for your users or cause, and show your successes and communicate your plans".

  • 12 strategic planning tools which can help to assess the economic situation, including PEST, SWOT, Cash Benefit Analysis, etc. Each is briefly described. A full report on strategic planning tools in the voluntary sector is available for download.

Value Based Management (VBM)

The Value Based Management (VBM) site is a library of explanation of management methods, models and theories, giving succinct outlines of numerous approaches under five headings: 'Strategy- Value Creation'; 'Valuation- Decision Making'; 'Organisation - Change - Culture'; 'Communication - Marketing'; and 'Leadership - Management'. The sections are cross-referenced. The links at the bottom of each column take you to the 12manage site. No log-in or registration is required for VBM.