Here we introduce you a new series of Q&A with individuals we admire and respect in the art industry. We ask them to answer some simple but important questions about working in the art world, and what to practice and embody as a professional in this industry.
We kick off the Q&A with Kristina Adduci, the founder of Art Zealous, an arts media platform dedicated to reporting on the latest art stories, artists, trends, and events shaping the art world. Before founding Art Zealous, Kristina worked at the Michael J. Fox Foundation for nearly four years leading their grassroots community fundraising program. She then went back to university and achieved her masters in international affairs. Using her business acumen and passion for art, Kristina started and built Art Zealous and she’s got some great answers to our questions.
What is the best piece of advice you can give about working in the art world? Networking AND connecting are key. You have to grow your network, but you also have to connect with people. Sometimes, it’s simply about showing up and introducing yourself to people you don’t know. It’s amazing how many people I’ve met and worked with because I met them at an art event. True connections are priceless.
What is something you encounter often with employees that tests your patience? Apathy, someone who doesn’t care. Someone who does the minimum, the basics and that’s it.
What makes a person hirable? Someone with a great attitude, ready to work hard and play hard. Someone with high emotional intelligence. You can be the smartest person in the room, but I am more likely to hire someone who has high emotional intelligence, .ie. this means being aware that emotions can drive our behavior and impact people (positively and negatively), and learning how to manage those emotions. You also have to have the competencies needed for the job and be eager to learn.
What is the most frowned upon trait for an employee? Cattiness and not willing to go beyond what they were hired to do. When you are offered an opportunity, even if it’s not within your job description, take it on.
What are things a person can do to make them stand out in the workplace? Thinking outside of the box. We’ve been trained all of our lives to color within the lines, and sometimes you just your employees to go crazy with new ideas and they don’t. Sometimes my employees will take an assignment and do it perfectly. Others, will not only do it perfectly but bring a little something extra, something that I didn’t think about.
What are things you can do proactively to boost your CV? I always look for how many times a person has volunteered in the industry they want to be in. For example, if you want to be in the arts industry volunteering for organizations like Free Arts, RxArt etc. That usually impresses me.
What does professional mean to you? It’s calling. A calling means that you are so passionate about it, you would do it no matter how much money you’d get paid because you love it.
Are there any tips you can give people entering the workforce? Follow your heart and passion and everything else will follow. Be kind to people and never miss an opportunity to learn something new.
Are there any tips you can give for increasing your online presence? Whether with your LinkedIn, Art Frankly or other accounts? Be personal, take people on your journey whether through instagram, FB or a personal blog. If you love to write, find publications that take on freelancers or submissions. It’s a great way to get your name out there and write about what you love.