• Organisation Development Consultancy works with cultural organisations to create and embed change in their practices, people and programmes
  • New Change Creation Programme aims to transform 25 organisations across England


Organisation Development Consultancy People Make It Work has been awarded a £479,070 grant from Arts Council England (ACE) to establish a new Change Creation Programme for cultural organisations. The award is part of ACE’s Building Resilience programme.

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People Make It Work’s Change Creation Programme, which begins in February 2017 and runs in to 2019, will see the consultancy work with 25 cultural organisations across England – working with their leaders to develop the resources, insights, space and community necessary to create change in their organisations, and inspire and propagate change in the wider ecology.

The programme will offer expert-led workshops, peer support, leadership learning grants, on-going consultancy, a digital learning hub and a researcher in residence. A core proposition is that leaders will develop the portfolio of change initiatives together, learning from each one and each other. Interested organisations can explore whether to apply for the programme through two open-call one day Change Potential workshops to be run in Bristol and Leeds in the spring.

Richard Watts, CEO of People Make It Work and Director of the Change Creation Programme said: “We are delighted to have been awarded this grant from Arts Council England. Over many years of learning with our cultural sector clients, we know how to create dramatic and irreversible change and we will be formalising this experience into a tight, effective, change creation ‘hothouse’. [/one_second]

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The sector faces many challenges, and this programme will enable leaders to take charge, address issues and make opportunities for themselves and their audiences. We’re looking for organisations from across England, they might be libraries, arts organisations or museums and can be of all scales, with a defining characteristic that they are change hungry with a compelling and high impact change idea that they are committed to making happen…”

People Make It Work help organisations to create and embed valuable and meaningful change, from one on one coaching to major strategic realignments. They have 17 years of experience in the cultural sector, with a 30-strong team based in London and working across the UK. People Make It Work’s portfolio includes the culture, charity, public, education and commercial sectors, and they are currently working with cultural organisations including The Barbican, Frieze, Arts Council Wales Resilience Programme, London Sinfonietta, Knowledge Quarter, Culture Southampton, London Culture Forum, Manchester Royal Exchange, Virtual Conservatoire with CDD, RADA, RCM and RAM, and Royal Opera House. [/one_second]
Interested applicants should contact Sian Bird, at People Make It Work at
For more information please contact: Richard Watts, Exec Director of People Make It Work at


The kinds of changes we might expect organisations to be proposing:

  • We need to generate more income and so we want to develop a commercial business selling our expertise alongside our core artistic output.
  • There are communities in our city that we just don’t connect with and so we want to re-engineer our community engagement work to create a grass roots initiative in every ward.
  • Our shop doesn’t bring in enough income, so we need to completely rethink the retail offer and create something that really contributes income to the organisation.
  • Our culture needs to shift to catch up with our recent artistic shifts and so we need to get all staff involved in unblocking our organisation.
  • We need to develop our ability to engage philanthropists and individual givers, and do that across the whole organisation from Board to Box office.

Recent comments from clients about the impact of working with People Make It Work.

“Be prepared to change your mind about consultants. And to work hard. With amazing results….
After just a day with People Make It Work, I spent 24 hours in deep recovery and then went on to change the world”
Kate Dore – Executive Director, Yorkshire ArtSpace

“People Make It Work is exceptionally good to work with, Richard gets to the heart of the issue and challenges ones thinking, but does so in a very supportive and constructive way that really creates progress”
CEO National Arts Organisation

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