Please Don’t Stop the Music
As a pianist since the age of four, I continue to maintain my musical skills and contacts within the musical community. I was pleased to help out when Vickie Stake, my former instructor and a member of the Florida Federation of Music Clubs, approached me with a dilemma.
FFMC’s annual competition, held at the Fine Arts Center at the University of North Florida, was set to incur a severe increase in fees from the university year over year as the university struggled with the challenges of a more constrained budget. While UNF had been generous in the past with their discounts due to the educational and non-profit nature of FFMC, they were left with no choice but to charge all clients market value for the facilities, raising the FFMC’s rate to levels unsustainable for the federation.
Keeping Expenses in Rhythm
At Mrs. Stake’s request, I analyzed UNF’s proposal and compared it to the actual needs of the FFMC for the weekend of their competition. I determined that a number of performance areas were being over-staffed by the university compared to their actual needs, and that several of the high-dollar areas were slated to be rented for full days, when half-day rentals would suffice with some smart planning.
In all, I was able to save the Federation in excess of $3,000 after spending a few hours creating a logistical plan for success and meeting with university officials to confirm that the proposed solution was satisfactory to them, as well.
While a year over year increase in price remained, crafting a more economical plan proved critical to ensuring that an event that drives hundreds of music students to the Jacksonville area each year was able to proceed as scheduled instead of being forced to relocate elsewhere. I also developed a number of proposed fundraising solutions through which the Federation could raise the necessary funds to make the event as close to cost-neutral as possible.