The university art museum loses its most successful director after nearly half a century of good management of collections, exhibits, and showings to university art students, a very academic approach to the use of the museum. Finding a new director that maintains the usual direction of the museum appears to be the issue, but really it’s the management’s indecision over not only a new director but also whether a new direction wouldn’t be a better idea. The problem lies in the results of hiring a new director who brings with him a new direction, as well. Management has a challenge to the old way of doing things. This challenge could also be viewed as a chance to accept a new direction that would involve the community, not just the academia. All in all, the issue, problem, and challenge revolves around whether the art museum should embrace a new direction. They don’t have mission statement, no job description for the position of director, and overall poor management.
Community involvement, including access to public school students, is the competitive force that challenges everything the university art museum management has been doing for decades. Having been successful under the direction of the retiring director that focused on exclusive academic involvement of university art students, management is divided in their response. Management responds by driving away the new director and getting caught up in indecision regarding this competition between the off-campus community and the on-campus student body. Bickering over these competitive directions renders the management’s response ineffective. From another perspective, it’s possible to say that management did not respond to the challenge of accepting a new direction. In this case, management’s lack of response to the logical new challenge of accepting the competitive force makes the university art museum look stodgy, elitist, and ineffective.