Avoiding Founder’s Syndrome in Arts Organizations: Studies of Successful Succession Transitions in Three Established Regional Theatres

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Title: Avoiding Founder’s Syndrome in Arts Organizations: Studies of Successful Succession Transitions in Three Established Regional Theatres
Author: Justice, Debra
Abstract: Founder's Syndrome may occur when an organization operates according to the personality of the founder , rather than its mission . Since arts organizations are often initiated and dominated by a single artist /founder , the potential for an art -related business to succumb to Founder’s Syndrome is high ; however , several large arts organizations have not only avoided Founder’s Syndrome , they have advanced the dreams of the founder beyond original concepts . Analyzing some success stories by comparing their processes with more recently established theories can provide insights for other arts organizations during leadership transitions . The nature of this study is to show evidence that theatre organizations need not succumb to Founder’s Syndrome . I analyzed three successful regional theatres from inception through today ; The Barter Theatre of Abingdon , Virginia ; the Dallas Theater Center in Dallas , Texas ; and the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco , California . Each of their founders , Robert Porterfield , Paul Baker , and William Ball , developed and implemented the concepts that defined their organizations . Today , the theatres are heralded as premier institutions amongst regional theatres . The companies were able to maneuver successfully through the tensions and difficulties that often mark leadership transitions . How this was accomplished , without the aid of today’s management theorists , is the focus of this dissertation .
URI: http : / /hdl .handle .net /2346 /ETD -TTU -2010 -12 -1046
Date: 2010-12

Citation

Avoiding Founder’s Syndrome in Arts Organizations: Studies of Successful Succession Transitions in Three Established Regional Theatres. Texas Tech University. Available electronically from http : / /hdl .handle .net /2346 /ETD -TTU -2010 -12 -1046 .

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