What can attendees expect from the Preparing To Prosper: Making A Difference With The AIM Hallmarks events and who will they benefit?

The events are for anyone who is involved in running a museum or heritage organisation whether that’s as a member of staff or as a volunteer or trustee. They are an opportunity to do two things: Firstly to hear from inspiring and practical speakers with ideas that you can adopt for your organisation and secondly they are also an opportunity to talk to delegates from organisations like your own to share ideas about how you can strengthen your organisation. So it’s really important for us to have that mix and we really wanted to have a strong networking element as part of it.

Awards special recognition – Jan 2021- Mid article banner

The new publication distils the best ideas from museums that have used the AIM Hallmarks, so that you can put them into practice immediately at your organisation to see positive results quickly.

Helen Wilkinson, assistant director, AIM

How will the speakers address the challenges that independent museums face?

In terms of the speakers we have a mix of case study speakers who run organisations of quite varying sizes who are going to talk about their own experiences with the Hallmarks programme and then for our keynote we have Moira Sinclair, chief executive of The Paul Hamlyn Foundation. We wanted Moira to speak as she has written and spoken very persuasively in the past about the importance of having a clear purpose for your organisation and how being driven by a strong sense of what it is that you want to achieve and the difference you want to make in the world – how that can really shape a positive organisational culture. Her experience as a funder means she gets to observe lots of organisations from across the cultural sector not just museums so she’s well placed to have a wise, well-informed view about what makes a difference.

How does the new publication benefit those working in museums and also link into the AIM Hallmarks programme?

The new publication distils the best ideas from museums that have used the AIM Hallmarks, so that you can put them into practice immediately at your organisation to see positive results quickly. One of the things that the publication really aims to do is to recognise that not everybody’s needs are the same, for example, some museums really want a checklist that they can benchmark themselves against whereas what others want is a starter for great conversation that will inspire them to think a bit harder about the nature of their organisation and what their development opportunities are. Other people are looking for top tips or case studies and what we really tried to do with the new publication was produce something that works on lots of different levels for people with different development needs. It’s a really important benefit for people attending the events that they get a hold of the hard copy before anyone else.

What changes will we see to AIM in 2018?

Our current funding through the Arts Council’s Museum Reslience Fund runs until March. Then we will start a new funding stream on 1 April through the arts council’s National Portfolio Organisation funding.

[AIM has been awarded £1.2m from 2018-22 by the Arts Council to continue its work to help museums and heritage organisations prosper. AIM will be joining the National Portfolio as a Sector Support Organisation – one of six specifically supporting museums.]

This is new for AIM and we are really delighted to be one of these organisations and recognised for the strength of support we offer to the sector.

The new funding will carry on some of the elements of the AIM Hallmarks programme, for example, we will still be running the Hallmarks Awards – that funding opportunity will still be there – and we will still be doing the Prospering Boards programme, which is supporting trustees. But then we are also going to be launching some new elements, which for the moment are a ‘watch this space’ as we are not ready to launch publically and we will continue to support our members through our core offer. This is also enhanced through the NPO funding. It means that we can afford more staff than we would be able to otherwise so we can be more responsive.


The Preparing To Prosper: Making A Difference With The AIM Hallmarks events will take place at Birmingham on Wednesday 17 January and Edinburgh on Tuesday 30 January. More information and booking details can be found on the AIM website

Following the events the Preparing to Prosper publication will be available on the AIM website and AIM members will get a copy with their February Bulletin.

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Preparing to Prosper Events

The Preparing To Prosper: Making A Difference With The AIM Hallmarks events will take place at:

Birmingham on Wednesday 17 January

Edinburgh on Tuesday 30 January.

More information and booking details can be found on the AIM website.