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The New CCA: A New Style of Governance

September 26th, 2012

Like I wrote in my last blog, we are working very hard to identify what the new CCA will be. We are working to ensure it will be a CCA the entire cultural sector can be proud of and one that responds to the needs of its members. We are systematically examining our model of governance to ensure the sector feels a sense of belonging and participation in the decisions we make as was recommended in the Five Year Strategic Plan adopted by the board last March.

When we learned the federal government would not be giving us the transitional funding we expected we initially placed an examination of our management style on the second rung of tasks for the CCA. We had to ensure there would be an organization to manage before we could examine the way it was going to be managed in the future! That is the reason why, over the course of the past six months, we concentrated all our efforts on building our membership and developing projects that would appeal to potential investors. And it appears we are headed in the right direction: renewals have been strong, the direction of key projects is becoming clearer and, in their initial phases, projects have been attracting interest. All of this to say, as long as the momentum continues, there will certainly be an organization to manage. The moment has come to highlight how the CCA of tomorrow will be different from the CCA of the past and it starts with the review of our governance model.

Over the course of the upcoming weeks we will systematically examine the organization. We will review our rules, the size of our board of governors, its make up, and selection process. We need to implement the mandate and organize the four strategic committees recommended by the Strategic Plan. Each committee will be comprised of one member of the board and four to six CCA members with authority over the activities and projects. The committees will work to ensure the CCA’s work reflects the four strategic axes identified in last winter’s meeting; Leadership and Networking, Knowledge Sharing, Government Relations and Public Engagement. The projects and activities that fall under more then one of these axes will be examined by more then one committee to ensure cohesion and the financial viability of the over all project. Finally, we need to assure the organization conforms to the regulations outlined in the new Canada Not-For-Profit Corporations Act. The bottom line is: we need to have everything in place before the general meeting in late June 2013 (but there is little doubt a special assembly will need to be called prior to the previously mentioned date to deal with urgent issues).

The new changes for membership incorporation will not end on the formal level. We are developing new forms for feed back on specific issues, putting in place committee directors for research projects, advocacy, etc. And on top of all this, there will be a series of initiatives to increase and diversify the composition of our membership.

In summary, there are a lot of balls in the air, especially when we consider the work that needs to be done to develop our projects and maintain our regular activities. We need to constantly scrutinize our priorities and use of resources. I can tell you that the secretariat is fortunate enough to have a loyal and devoted team but we can’t push our members to the point of burning out!

And with that been said, I must return to the task at hand!