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Thought Leadership

Let’s Get Serious about Play: Creating Resilience

Erin K.

Erin KoppelVice President, Enterprise Consulting, Tessitura Network

TitleLet’s Get Serious about Play: Creating Resiliency


Read/View Time3 min

How would you define resiliency?

Is it getting up when you’re knocked down? Is it seeing the punch coming and dodging it? Is it working together as a team to minimize the knocks that will inevitably come your way?

For us in the business of arts and culture, one definition of resiliency might be sustainability through change, which isn’t very motivating. What if we aimed higher and defined resilience as thriving through change?

Change is constant, and only visible in retrospect. We evolve our programming, our visitors and audiences change, and our technological tools advance. Some of us take risks, trying new or even crazy ideas to try to keep our organizations on their feet. Others get cautious, and the reluctance to try new ideas can lead to boredom, for us and and for our audiences.

Erin Koppel presenting at Communicating the Museum, Chicago, October 2018

Is there a middle ground between the extremes of risky and boring?

There is, and that middle ground is fun. And I believe that this is precisely where organizations and individuals can create resilience. We can achieve resilience through the three innate elements of play: curiosity, creativity, and imagination.

Curiosity is the mindset of exploring the possibilities; it’s an open mind. How willing are you and your team to explore new ideas or try new approaches? Are you complacent, or are you curious? Open the tap of curiosity in your organization and explore.

Creativity is doing something differently, in your own way. It requires the courage to play and to try things out. It is sometimes born of desperation, such as when a deadline looms. It can be uncomfortable at first, but it’s also entirely natural once you get going. You and your team must have the courage to be creative.

Imagination is curiosity and creativity together, to create something amazing. It is the secret sauce to bring curiosity and creativity together at their best. This is where the magic happens in the realm of play..

How can organizations encourage curiosity, creativity, and imagination? What can you do to make room for play?

Find out by reading the rest of the article. 

Read the full article >


Erin Koppel, Senior Director of Enterprise Consulting, wrote this editorial as a follow-up to her presentation at Communicating the Museum Chicago in October 2018.  

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Erin K.

Erin Koppel

Vice President, Enterprise Consulting

Tessitura Network

Erin has 20+ years of experience in development, from annual funds to major giving, and cultivation and engagement activities, be it a gala, auction, and all other types of events.

Prior to joining Tessitura Network, she was Deputy Director of Development at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. Erin left with an exemplary record of successful contributed revenue strategies which leveraged engagement opportunities across all transactions and touchpoints with patrons and subscribers. Since beginning with Enterprise Consulting, she has worked worldwide in all genres and sizes of organizations using Tessitura. Erin resides in southwestern suburban Chicago, Illinois.

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