The “Boston Lyric Opera” case, the first documented application of the Balanced Scorecard to an arts organization, was written to illustrate the application of the Balanced Scorecard to a nonprofit organization, especially one whose performance some people believe can not be quantified and measured. The case provides the history of the arts organization and describes its prior strategic planning process.
It shows how developing the scorecard, a logical corollary of the Blob’s planning recess, served to align the diverse interests of management, artistic directors and the board of directors. The BLOB was fortunate to have strong leadership by the opera company’s general director and deputy director, the active engagement of key board members, and an experienced BBS consultant/facilitator. Thus, in addition to illustrating a nonprofit arts organization’s strategy map and BBS, the case provides a road map for a successful development and implementation process in a nonprofit organization.
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The case includes the BLOB strategy map and asks students to suggest and debate the measures for the scorecard’s strategic objectives, particularly its customer perspective. Once the class sees that plausible measures can be created for Blob’s strategic objectives, it can discuss the benefits and challenges the BLOB faces from use of the scorecard. Students can also discuss the Implementation approach used by the BLOB, and the management system that the general director Is using to embed the scorecard philosophy Into the organization.
Assignment Questions 1 . The Boston Lyric Opera working group has selected eight customer objectives for Its three strategic themes (see billeted Items on pages 5-7 of the case, also summarized In the Customer row of Exhibit 5): Develop loyal and generous supporters Build reputation on national and International opera scene Reach the Boston-area community That measures should the project team select for these eight objectives? 2. What changes were required to adapt the Balanced Scorecard to a nonprofit organization? 3.
What are the benefits from developing the Balanced Scorecard at BLOB? What challenges and barriers must Del Stets and Daylong-Sullivan overcome to capture these benefits? 4. Are the departmental managers, artistic leaders, and employees at the BLOB more empowered or less empowered after the Balanced Scorecard has been created? 5. Is Janice Del Stets using the Balanced Scorecard as a performance measurement system or a management system? 6. Comment on the process that the BLOB used to develop the BBS. What was critical for the success of the project? From use of the scorecard.
Students can also discuss the implementation approach seed by the BLOB, and the management system that the general director is using to embed the scorecard philosophy into the organization. Its three strategic themes (see billeted items on pages 5-7 of the case, also summarized in the Customer row of Exhibit 5): Develop loyal and generous Build reputation on national and international opera scene challenges and barriers must Del Stets and Dialing-Sullivan overcome to capture these benefits? 4. Are the departmental managers, artistic leaders, and employees at BLOB used to develop the BBS. What was critical for the success of the project?