‘The public’ is a very majestic building and is the home of Black Country touring. I met Frances Land the Co-Artistic director of Black Country Touring in her office. To start with, I definitely have loads to say about The Public. Well I am stopping in a sentence, after hearing about the gossips and arguments about ‘The Public’ building, I was curious to see it. This gave me an opportunity to visit the building. It was Huge! Pretty! Creative! Having arrived 45 minutes earlier, I went around the gallery in the 3rd floor which was worth looking, as it had the different architecture models and the olden pictures of Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton by the Black Country touring.
Frances Land a very pro-active, intelligent and motivated women whom I have rarely met. We started our conversation with a coffee, like the coffee with colour, flavour and taste; we started with her arts background, and then slipped into her current role in Black Country touring and ended the conversation with some leadership skills and tips.
Frances joined the Black Country touring in 2007 as co-artist director, before which, she did some freelancing for them and was also the Special projects co-ordinator with Foursight theatre. The conversation started with Black Country being a very unique theatre company catering to only Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton. They hit specific audience in the community like the deaf community. She also stated about her company being the monopoly in the industry with such unique services. They have no competition in the field as their target audience are different and untouched. They help, share and produce for that specific community.
“We work with a wide range of people, from young people, South Asian communities, and physically challenged people. We grew along with them. We want to encourage different people to come together and enjoy the experience – together”.
The conversation slowly seeped through to their approach to the team and steps taken to keep them motivated. She explained about listening to every employee voice and empowering each one of them. Every employee has same shared vision which is driving the theatre. They all have the same vision of helping and sharing. She also added that to motivate their staffs they go out for team outing and spend quality time with each other.
Further the discussion narrowed down to Black Country theatre being the leader in the market and how they managed to be one. Leadership is about being responsive to the society, to the team. Listening to both of them and responding to their needs is vital. Creating and identifying opportunities in the space. She concluded with “Giving quality service in the right market and respond to the market is the only mantra of leadership”.
The Secret of our leadership:
- “Being good- quality service we deliver”
- “Being responsive”
By Indumathy Devendran, MA Media and Creative Enterprise student at BCU
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