1.1 Senior Leadership

Case Study

OE21 Guideline: 

1.1 Senior Leadership


Prerequisites to 1.1 Senior Leadership Case Study


Before you review this case study page, the Leadership Focus Team (LFT) should have reviewed the following OE21 standards and their corresponding case study pages:


From this point forward, our Case Study will focus less on the simulated dialogue between the leaders and the managers of the Elafino Sports Center. With less dialogue, we will focus on the analysis of the results of the implementation of each OE21 Standard. 

1.1 Senior Leadership Review - Before reviewing this case study page, visit and review the

1.1 Senior Leadership Assessment

1.1 Senior Leadership Case Study (Results and Analysis of Implementing 1.1)


After completing Senior Leadership 1.1 Implementation Tasks, the Elafino Senior leaders and managers have accomplished the following:


Senior Leadership Policy. The policy statements created in OE21 P.1 Organizational Description are given a final review and approval by the LFT. These are the final mission, vision, values, communications, and ethical behavior related statements:


  • Mission: The Elafino Sports Center's mission is to provide community multi-sports activities to youth, teen, young adult, adult, and senior citizens within our service area.


  • Vision: The Elafino Sports Center's vision is to be the top-rated hockey, figure skating, and fitness center in the community we serve.


  • Values: The Elafino Sports Center's values are being created based on the Baldrige Framework Core Values and Concepts. Note: These core values and concepts are available in the 2019–2020 Baldrige Performance Excellence Framework Criteria Commentary provided with the OE21 tools.   


  • Communications using INTRANET: The Elafino Sports Center's uses an INTRANET for communications of high-value content to senior leaders, managers, and the workforce; including the following content and tools:


  • Announcements

  • Calendars

  • Current Initiatives

  • Employee Directory

  • Employee Onboarding

  • Employee Recognition & Rewards

  • FAQ

  • Forms

  • Ideas and suggestions

  • News

  • Recognition and Rewards

  • SOP (standard operating procedures)

  • Surveys (special)

  • OE21 Guidelines 27 web pages with policy, process flows, implementation tasks, tools and survey links)


  • Ethics: The Elafino Sports Center's leaders and workforce embrace the need for ethical behavior in all business and public communications and transactions. A key measure of ethical behavior is the number of reported incidents where less than acceptable ethical behaviors are exhibited. The goal is zero ethics-related incidents. The ethical behavior requirements are listed in OE21 1.1 Senior Leadership and are published on the Intranet.


  • Key Intended Outcomes (KIO): The Elafino Sports Center senior leaders and managers have set five (5) strategic themes aimed at the achievement of high-level results, including:


  • KIO 1 - Leadership Excellence

  • KIO 2 - Customer Excellence

  • KIO 3 - Operations Excellence

  • KIO 4 - Workforce Excellence

  • KIO 5 - Community Excellence (future option to be added to OE21)


These KIOs are defined in this OE21 1.1 Senior Leadership (Task 1.1.7(A) - Set KIOs. Each of the KIOs is aligned with its focus team (LFT, CFT, OFT, or WFT).


The Elafino organization has established a hierarchy of Results for each KIO, configured as follows:


  • KIO (Key Intended Outcomes)


  • Strategic Goals are created during strategy development and implementation (OE21 2.1 and 2.2), and each strategic goal is aligned to one KIO


  • Strategic Objectives - one or more objectives within each Strategic Goal


  • Key Performance Indicators (KPI) - one or more measures (trend charts) for each KIO


  • Sub-KPIs - (optional) for KPIs that require lower-level measures that "roll-up" into a KPI


Note: The actual strategic goals, strategic objectives, and KPIs are created during the implementation of OE21 2.1 Strategy Development.


Team Charter - The Elafino organization has implemented a Team Charter for the OE21 Implementation Project, that includes:

  • Business Case

  • Problem Statement

  • Project Scope

  • Goals and Objectives

  • Focus Team Responsibilities

  • Focus Team Names

  • OE21 Implementation Milestones, dates

  • OE21 Project Action Plans (as required)


  • Senior Leadership Assessment - The Elafino organization conducted the Senior Leadership Assessment as described in the 1.1 Implementation Tasks. This assessment is a web-based survey.


The results of the Elafino Senior Leadership survey indicated that leaders have:

  • Established mission and vision

  • Established KIOs

  • Established values and ethical behavior guides

  • Accomplished the mission to a moderate extent

  • Not maximized the value of the Elafino organization to its customers and workforce

  • Started creating an environment for performance assessment and improvement

  • Failed to create an environment for innovation and intelligent risk-taking

  • Failed to create a high-performance rewards system

  • Begun creating a Governance system

  • Have not linked executive compensation directly to the financial and customer performance

  • Have not established a Community Impact assessment and contributions plan


Figure 1.1-3 (below) provides an example of the most recent Senior Leadership Assessments scores, indicating that the trend is not going toward the target at this time and that actions will be needed to improve senior leadership results. Selected and input Measures, Targets, and Benchmarks data into a Performance Measurement System (PMS).


Figure 1.1-3 shows the following results:


  • The Senior Leadership assessment target is 80

  • The current score for this assessment is 65 and is trending downward, away from the target 

  • The Alpha comparative measure of 75 is typical of sports centers (10 points better than Elafino)

  • The Bravo comparative measure of 30 is the lowest leadership score measured at another sports center


From the results of OE21 1.1 Senior Leadership implementation, the Elafino senior leaders and managers have a good start in creating an environment for success, ensuring a focus on creating and balancing value for customers, workforce, and other stakeholders and ensuring personal accountability for senior leader's actions.


The Elafino Leadership Focus Team (LFT) has also created the Leadership Excellence Action Plan project to add tasks aimed at driving the senior leadership results toward higher performance levels.


COMMUNICATE 1.1 SENIOR LEADERSHIP OUTPUTS - To maintain an appropriate degree of transparency, the LFT (IT) publishes selected areas of these Elafino senior leadership results on the organization's INTRANET, with appropriate access to those leaders, managers and workforce individuals who should receive this information. 


Select Item 1.1 Measures for PMS. The Elafino LFT used the OE21 Performance Measurement System (PMS), and Metrics Tables to select measures of 1.1 Senior Leadership.


Input Item 1.1 Measures into PMS.  The OE21 PMS workbook contains tabs for the input of dates, measures, targets, and two benchmarks (alpha and bravo competitor or comparative organizations). The result of data entry creates a Trend Chart for each of the measures selected.


Figure 1.1-3 below provides an example Elafino Trend Chart for Item 1.1.

Figure 1.1-3 Example Trend Chart for OE 1.1 Results

The Elafino LFT (IT Manager) published Guideline 1.1 Senior Leadership output results on the Elafino INTRANET, and notified all focus teams and managers of these updates.


1.1 Senior Leadership - (After Implementation)


The OE21 Facilitator (FAC) plans and initiates a post-implementation online meeting. This meeting is attended by the Leadership Focus Team (LFT) and the leaders of the CFT, OFT, and WFT. 

The FAC begins the meeting with an introductory statement:


"Congratulations on completing OE21 Guideline 1.1 Senior Leadership."


"Now everyone can go to our Intranet and view our mission, vision, key intended outcomes, and ethical values related to our workforce, customers, and other stakeholders."

The VP Operations has a good question: "Please tell me again what these Key Intended Outcomes (KIOs) are used for?"

The FAC responds. "The Key Intended Outcomes are used as strategic themes for the five excellence areas will be improving. These are excellence in leadership, customer, operations, workforce, and community-related areas. We want to be excellent in each of these KIOs."

The VP Operations has another question: "How will our strategic goals and objectives work with these KIOs?"

The FAC responds. "Strategic goals and objectives fit under KIOs" 

To explain further, the FAC opens the OE21 2.2 Guideline and scrolls to Figure 2.2-3 (shown below).

KIO2 Strategic Plan Big Picture.PNG

Figure 2.2-3 Strategy Implementation Model (from OE21 2.2)

The FAC continues to explain.


"As shown in Figure 2.2-3, the KIOs are strategic themes are strategic goals aimed at overall organizational excellence."

"Below the KIOs are Strategic Objectives, which are derived from a number of different strategic assessments (surveys of our customers, workforce, key stakeholders, workforce, community, and a special SWOT assessment).  

"Strategic Objectives are used to create projects called Strategy Action Plans."

The FAC finishes the explanation. "We will learn a lot more about all this when we implement OE21 2.1 Strategy Development and 2.2 Strategy Implementation." 

 There were no additional questions. The CEO closed the meeting with a statement:


"OK folks, we have completed another milestone in this OE21 initiative, and I appreciate your contributions, especially on writing our new mission and vision statements. So once again - good work!"

Working Together


  • If you were the CEO of your organization how would you feel about your other leaders and your managers helping you create the organization's mission, vision, values, and ethical statements? (Hint: Review the POLICY statements in OE21 1.1 Senior Leadership)

  • Why do you think that OE21 recommends Key Intended Outcomes as a framework for strategic planning? (Hint; What if you left out KIO-4 Workforce Excellence; or other KIOs?).


  • If you were the CEO how would you feel about your other leaders and your managers conducting the OE21 Senior Leadership Assessment? Would you keep the results to yourself?

  • Take a look at the Trend Chart (Figure 1.1-3) above. Take a minute to absorb these ideas:

    • The target is 80 and targets are goals that should be set by senior leaders

    • The most recent measure is 65 which is lower than the target by 15 points

    • The trend of the measures is away from the target instead of toward the target

    • If the target is trending away from the target ACTION is required to reverse the trend

  • IF senior leaders do not take the time to help select measures and set the value of TARGETS for all measures, then how can leaders expect their managers to know leader expectations?

  • What did you learn from your studies of this OE21 Standard 1.1?

  • What do you think you should do to be a better manager?

Where we go from here: If you are reading this OE21 Case Study to help understand how OE21 works in a real organization, continue to Case Study OE21 1.2 Governance and Social Responsibilities.