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Brooke Caton, Stephanie Slaughter, Junko Billheimer and Katie CorneliusDr. Milan Larson25 March 2013BAMG 554Case 5 AnalysisCirque du Soleil
Introduction and CharactersCirque du Soleil is perhaps one of the most recognized names in entertainment in North America. The company is known as an exemplary master of the "Blue Ocean Strategy" coined by W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne, and its short life has been marked by success after success. However, as with every organization, Cirque du Soleil has had its strategic and operational issues. The case introduces many individuals and parties that were involved in the problem areas of the organization.•Guy Laliberté, President and Chief Executive Officer•Murielle Cantin, Casting Director•Bernard Petiot, Gymnastics Coach•Marc Gagnon, Chief Operating Officer•Vincent Gagné, Multimedia Ventures Director/Manager•Marc D'Amico, Executive Vice President of Marketing•Gilles Fontaine, Executive Producer•Martin Dumont, "Dralion" Interim Tour Director•Alison Crawford, "Dralion" Artistic Director•Richard Imbeau, Human Resources Executive•Cirque du Soleil performers and employees•Cirque du Soleil fans and audiencesMain Management Issues
The management issues that plague Cirque du Soleil result mostly from its unique operating environment. Some of the main management issues that were highlighted in the case can be divided into the following areas: •Operational silos between headquarters, the performance venues, and touring shows•Focus on growth with no strategy, mission, plan or processes•Difficulty in creating boundaries for the performers between home and workspace•A diverse workforce with culture and language barriers•Little to no positions in the company available for aging performers•Conflict between maintaining the creative environment and having a business structure•Difficulty in creating an inclusive product that doesn't saturate the market•Offering competitive salaries to the performers and other employees without raising ticket prices•Striking a balance between risky stunts and performer safety to prevent costly injuries•Uncertainty about the creative future and longevity of the company after Guy Laliberté is gone•Aligning the talents and interests of the performers and employees with the goals of the organization•A highly mobile workforce that struggles with homesickness and burnoutFundamental ErrorsWhile Cirque du Soleil demonstrates much strength in its highly creative environment, we noticed various fundamental errors committed by management throughout the development of the case.
The Cirque employee newsletter, la boule, seemed well intentioned: a publication where employees could submit their feelings and concerns about the company, uncensored. We felt, however, that Cirque should exercise caution with how open the newsletter is. It is possible for the rants of a few bad eggs to soil the reputability of a company. The case was not specific as to