Introducing COCAbiz

A funny thing happened last month as I was meeting with the new executive director of COCA — St. Louis’ premier community arts center.  It was a “get to know you” meeting, but as she and I were discussing all the workshops, seminars and training. for businesses that COCA was developing, she asked me if I had any interest at all in becoming the first Director of this new initiative, now named COCAbiz.

My first (and second) response was, “No.”  While I was happy to help get COCAbiz off the ground, I loved what I did, and had no desire to do something else.  Only after I lost a few nights of sleep mulling over the venture’s potential, did I finally come around. 

Those of you who know me can appreciate how taken I was by the idea of building creative and innovative events, seminars, classes and training for businesses and organizations —  while utilizing the resources, facilities and (most importantly) some of the 200+ talented artists, actors, dancers, and teachers who call COCA home. 

That was five weeks ago.

Today, I’m incredibly honored and humbled to announce that I am the new Director of COCAbiz.  COCAbiz will combine business-focused, arts-based instruction and theory with creative facilitation to help businesses, organizations and those who work for them to think better together as they solve their toughest challenges.

But what about my “day job” as a speaker, writer and facilitator?  I’ll continue to speak about innovation, creativity, alternative billing and client service to lawyers and firms.  I’ll keep blogging, and I’ll also keep doing firm retreats and conferences, but will have the additional resources of COCAbiz behind me.  I’ll also get a few more nights each month at home with my daughter, which she and I will both cherish.

In short, it is the best of all worlds for me.  The challenge of building an amazing business inside one of the nation’s most-loved arts and education institutions was too great to pass up.  I’m excited beyond measure, and can’t wait to share more of what we’ll be doing at COCAbiz here and elsewhere.

Thanks for your support, and as always, let me know how I can help you.

4 Responses to Introducing COCAbiz
  1. DanReus
    August 31, 2010 | 12:35 pm

    Congrats on the new job – looking forward to Openly Disruptive and COCAbiz working together!

    I’m in UCity – let me know when you have time to grab lunch.

  2. Connie Crosby
    August 31, 2010 | 5:35 pm

    Wow! Congratulations, Matthew. You are a creative thinker with a business focus, so this sounds like a great fit. They are lucky to have signed you on!

    All the best,

  3. Elmayuga
    September 1, 2010 | 5:00 pm

    Congratulations, Matt! I know that you will do a great job as the Director. This will give you a great basis to run your own PubCampSTL.

  4. Keaggy
    September 2, 2010 | 3:35 pm


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