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Hindsight is 2020: What We Learned About Leadership in a Crisis

At the height of the pandemic, as so many aspects of our professional and personal lives hung in the balance and emotions fluctuated between despair and hope, effective leadership surfaced …

The Era of the Visionary Museum Director Is Over … or It Should Be

I recall interviewing as a candidate for director positions, and "What is your vision?" was the most common question. The question requires candidates to take their limited knowledge of an …

Rethinking Our Human Resources Practices to Build a More Equitable Museum

Less than three weeks after COVID forced museums around the globe to close their doors last year, an article by Arundhati Roy in The Financial Times titled “The Pandemic is a Portal” …

Strengthening Our Core: How Defining Shared Values Can Revitalize Teams

All aquariums, zoos, and museums have core values—beliefs, philosophies, and principles that drive the organization. These values support the organization’s vision, shape its culture, and …

How to Master Humble Learning, a Requirement for Cultural Competence

Among dancers, there is a common saying that even an advanced dancer can always work on their basic step. I have been a salsa and Latin dancer for over a decade, but when I attend a …

Running with Scissors (and a Mask!): COVID-19 Responses at Old Salem Museums & Gardens

Just as flexible buildings can withstand hurricane-force winds and earthquakes, flexible institutions can withstand monumental challenges like a global pandemic. Because of our four years …

onePULSE, Many Perspectives: Collaborating with Diverse Stakeholders to Develop the National Pulse Memorial & Museum

In the aftermath of a tragedy, there is no one way for communities to grieve and heal. This is especially true when the event impacts people on a national or even international scale. The …

Running with Scissors: Creating a Sustainable History Experience (2017-2020)

You may know that Old Salem Museums & Gardens (OSMG) and The Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts (MESDA) in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, have been making considerable changes …

MSN Shelfie #2: Leadership Books for Highs and Lows

View a recording of “MSN SHELFIE #2” presented by American Alliance of Museum (AAM)’s Museum Studies Network on Wednesday, May 20, 2020. Moderator Laura-Edythe Coleman and our …

Diary of a Museum Reopening

As of May 7, the Buffalo Bill Center of the West is officially reopened to visitors. The BBCW is a massive AAM-accredited facility located in rural Wyoming in the Yellowstone National Park …

Racism, Unrest, and the Role of the Museum Field

On June 3, attendees of the AAM Virtual Annual Meeting & MuseumExpo came together to hear from Dr. Johnnetta B. Cole, Secretary Lonnie G. Bunch III, and Lori Fogarty on the museum …

For Museum Leaders Who Want to Do Better

In the midst of a pandemic that has brought an incredible amount of pain and suffering to so many of us, I know there’s a lot on your plate as a leader, and you are being pulled in multiple …
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Latest Stories from AAM

CARE-apy: Psychological Science and the Visitor Experience

Category: On-Demand Programs: Audience Research & Evaluation
When visitors leave a museum, in what ways are they different than when they walked in? What intellectual connections did visitors make with the ideas and artifacts with which they …

Changing Expectations, Changing Experiences: Cultural Audiences in the Post‐pandemic World

Category: On-Demand Programs: Engaging Audiences
This is a recorded session from the 2020 AAM Virtual Annual Meeting and MuseumExpo. Audience attitudes towards culture—including basic assumptions about what constitutes a cultural …

60 Ideas in 60 Minutes: Be the Change You Wish to See

Category: On-Demand Programs: Financial Sustainability
This is a recorded session from the 2020 AAM Virtual Annual Meeting and MuseumExpo. Museum professionals must understand fundraising to create and sustain value for their communities. Using …

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