Case Detail

Case Summary

Museum XYZ, Major City, USA

Case Number: 5-208-256, Year Published: 2008

HBS Number: KEL550

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Key Concepts

Nonprofits, Museum Management, Nonprofit Board Governance, Strategic Planning, Mission Definition


Museum XYZ built a beautiful facility in a large, Midwestern city. However, after opening to much acclaim, attendance began to fall off, finances were in a shambles, and there appeared to be a leadership void. The board hired two consultants to conduct a review to pinpoint the issues. This case discusses what the consultants learned, and the teaching note discusses what the board decided to do with the information.

Learning Objectives

To showcase the sometimes difficult decisions that nonprofit boards of directors face, including:

  • the importance of defining an organization’s mission and its stakeholders,
  • the value of strategic planning, managing large-scale financial issues, establishing professional and lay leadership,
  • successfully raising funds for purposes that further the mission, and
  • managing change and organizational transformation.

Number of Pages: 5

Extended Case Information

Teaching Areas: Non Profit, Organizational Behavior

Teaching Note Available: Yes

Geographic: United States

Industry: Museums/Cultural Institutions

Organization Size: Small

Decision Maker Position: Board of Directors

Decision Maker Gender: Male and Female

Year of Case: 2000