Institutional Diaries: FRU #2


In their second Institutional diary, FRU reflect the Nagrada Denes Award Exhibition.

After the successful Nagrada Denes Award exhibition, our organization and team had a pivotal realization: working with and investing in youth is crucial. This revelation underscored the importance of leaving an institutional legacy by empowering the younger generation. In the context of North Macedonia, where many cultural organizations are aging, it is essential to cultivate new talent, invest in their capacities, transfer knowledge and resources, and foster a new cultural community.

We recognized that to leave a meaningful legacy, we must invest in the local context through our youth. This involves not only providing resources but also instilling in them the values and skills necessary for future leadership. Our commitment to this cause became a driving force behind our strategic planning.

To achieve these goals, it was imperative to establish true organizational values and honest principles of work. We emphasized democratic ethics, professionalism, a good organizational structure, and mutual respect. These principles became the foundation of our organizational culture and guided our interactions both internally and externally.

Establishing Core Organizational Values

To effectively engage with and support the youth, it was essential to solidify our organizational values. We committed to principles of democratic ethics, professionalism, a robust organizational structure, and mutual respect. These values serve as the bedrock of our operations and interactions. All the values were here somewhere but never on paper. We thought that it is important to focus on it, to reexamine them and give it an emotional frame, dot where all our strings are connected emotionally and professionally.

Democratic Ethics: Ensuring that every voice within the organization is heard and valued. This principle is especially crucial when working with youth, as it empowers them and fosters a sense of ownership and responsibility.

Professionalism: Maintaining high standards in all our activities. This includes being reliable, accountable, and committed to continuous improvement.

Good Organizational Structure: Having a clear and effective structure that supports our goals and facilitates efficient operations.

Respect: Valuing each member’s contributions and time, which helps in building a cohesive and supportive environment.

In line with these values, we decided to test a new horizontal model of organizational management. This model was designed to democratize decision-making processes and promote shared leadership. We aimed to create an environment where young members could actively participate and influence the direction of the organization.

Testing a Horizontal Model within MOT Festival activities

To better integrate these values, we decided to test a new horizontal model of running the organization. This involved implementing activities that encouraged shared leadership and decision-making among all members. We were determined to push boundaries and innovate, conducting thorough evaluations after each activity to refine our approach.

Over the course of a year, we observed significant changes. Initially, the younger members were hesitant to embrace the power to decide and preferred guidance from authority figures. However, as the year progressed, this mindset shifted. They began to appreciate and enjoy their increased role in decision-making processes. They voiced their preferences for projects and initiatives, contributing to a more vibrant and dynamic organizational culture.

Positive Outcomes and Future Adjustments

The results of this experiment were promising. Not only did the young members become more engaged and proactive, but there was also a notable increase in respect among group members. This collaborative environment fostered a sense of ownership and responsibility, leading to the growth of our membership base.

We are encouraged by these outcomes and plan to continue this experimental approach. Regular adjustments will be made to ensure the model remains responsive to the needs of our members. We have learned that there is no fixed model or system of operation within an institution or organization. Flexibility and adaptability are key to maintaining a thriving, inclusive, and progressive cultural community.

This journey has reaffirmed our belief in the importance of investing in youth. By empowering the next generation, we not only secure the future of our organization but also contribute to the broader cultural landscape of North Macedonia. We look forward to continuing this path of growth and innovation, leaving a lasting legacy for future generations.