Using Agile Methods to Improve Theme Park Operations A case study at Gröna Lunds Tivoli

Examensarbete för masterexamen
Master's Thesis
Quality and operations management (MPQOM), MSc
Management and economics of innovation (MPMEI), MSc
Onmalm, Marcus
Stengård Tamm, Nicole
In the theme park industry, part of the larger leisure industry, external driving forces such as technology development and fluctuating guest preferences create a fast-moving impact. This in combination with theme parks with an all-year-round operational schedule set up a situation where the managers continuously proceed with their long-term development work along with the everyday tasks related to the daily operations. To move forward and act on the external driving forces theme parks are suggested to have a high level of organizational agility (OA). The aim of the study was to identify which methods that are possible to use in theme parks to increase OA. By conducting a case study at the Swedish theme park Gröna Lund’s Tivoli (GLT), the theory about OA mostly set in other industries could be translated to the theme park industry’s characteristics. Based on the theory, a framework was created to assess GLT’s level of OA which was conducted based on primary data collected through interviews with park operations managers and analysis of corporate documents. Interviews were held with the managers working in GLT’s park operations. The assessed level of OA at GLT showed that their processes and activities imply that the theme park work in an agile way but some aspects have room for improvement. The results also revealed that all suggested methods to increase OA had the potential to be used in theme parks, although customized methods are proposed taking into account the industry’s characteristics. Due to the identified room for improvement in some aspects of OA, the methods were evaluated to increase these. Lastly, how to successfully implement these methods was also examined in terms of GLT’s performance in suggested success factors. Through comparing the result with secondary data from previous research key findings were found. The first key finding is that the framework is possible to use when assessing organizational agility in theme parks. Secondly, the findings also show that the suggested methods are possible to use if they are customized and the use of them has the potential to increase OA. Finally, successful implementation of them is done by setting up a strategy for which approach to use and including strategies for how to take advantage of the success factors. The suggested strategy for theme parks is using a wave and spike approach. Concluding, these findings offer valuable guidance for theme parks seeking to reach a higher level of OA in their park operations, thus, also improving operational efficiency and guest satisfaction.
agile methods , organizational agility , implementation strategy , theme parks , service management , operations management , operational efficiency , guest satisfaction
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