I come from a part of the world where there are only two types of job: “summat useful” or “summat daft”. If you fix boilers, drive buses or make things you’re probably doing “summat useful”. If people don’t really know what you do even though they know your job title it’s probably “summat daft”.
Yorkshire folk are well-known for being particularly blunt, so when I told an elderly gentleman in my home town last month about the new job I was about to start at MUSA he quickly denounced it: “Ee, lad,” he said, “that dun’t half sound like summat daft.” To be fair, he had a point. I was about to start work as an Audience Development Officer and that does sound a bit airy-fairy, doesn’t it?
Appearances can be deceiving though. The aim of my job is to find out what our visitors like, what they don’t like and what they want and then make sure they get it. It’s hard work and involves more numbers than I care to think about, but it means that you’ll want to visit our venues more often, will enjoy yourselves more when you come and learn lots without even realising it! If lots of you want to learn about our paintings through music, I’ll find out and make sure you can. If you want more behind the scenes stuff, we’ll do it. If you want to play at jousting with the mediaeval maces… well, you’ll probably be disappointed.
I’ll also be finding out about the folk that don’t come to MUSA or the Gateway Galleries or the MUSA Collections Centre and looking at what we can do so that they can feel like the collections, displays and events are there for them too.
Now don’t tell me that all that doesn’t amount to “summat useful”?
This means that next time you visit you might be asked to fill out a quick survey or someone might ask you a couple of questions about your visit. It won’t take you long at all and it’ll make sure you get some really top class events and resources. I’d love it if you’d help us by answering the questions with total honesty, I even want to know all the bad stuff. By helping us in this way you’ll be doing “summat useful” too!