Autumn in the North Cemetery.

Sixty miles west of Boston, Massachusetts there is the small New England town of Sturbridge. Located at the junction of I-90 (The Mass Pike), and I-84 it has become known as the "Crossroads of New England". The town was first settled over 300 years ago, and like other small New England towns it has grown just enough over the years to be in a difficult place today. How do we embrace the future without forgetting how we got to our present? How do we attract the right kind of growth, and maintain who we are? And, what about our culture out here in Central Massachusetts?

These pages will cause one to think about how to protect what we have, our future direction, and how to move on in the very best way.

Those thoughts, and other ramblings, will hopefully inspire more thought, conversation, action, and occasionally a smile...

...seems to be working so far

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Setting The Example To Follow Locally

Old Sturbridge Village has had a remarkable ride since Jim Donahue took over as CEO.  He has a taken an entity that was on the loosing side of the economy before the economy crashed, and not only made it profitable again, but did it during a time when the rest of the world was experiencing  a global economic down turn.

Amazing, of course, but not surprising in hind sight.  OSV has made some great moves over the past few years that have been very successful, that have resulted in many more visitors, and much more revenue.  Their latest move in saving money for the Village is excellent.  OSV has hired Swedish company Securitas Security Services USA INC  to take over their current security department.  The neat thing about this, besides saving the Village a lot of money is that part of the agreement with Securitas is that none of the current eleven security employees will be displaced.  They will either be offered positions in the new department, or positions with Securitas elsewhere.

Times change, and changes inevitably have to be made, but they don't have to be heartless. For those retained at the security department there may be changes in salary, benefits, and hours, but they won't be let go if they are eligible after background checks.

It is good to see that thought was put into the current employees welfare.  Over the past few years this has been a rare occurrence elsewhere due to the economy.  I think when an entity keeps the most basic things dear during changes, or crisis, they may fair better than those that don't.  Simple matter of having consideration for others, and letting it guide you when making decisions, and hard choices.

It is just a small part of a major shift in attitude that occurred a few years ago when Donhue took over.  It is why they are succeeding today.

Watch OSV, and learn from what they have done, are doing, and have in store. There are great lessons to learn here.


  1. Shame on OSV for out sourcing to a non American company. If they retain all the present employees at their same salaries there is no way that OSV can save 50 grand per year. OSV already out sources their food, maintenance, and gift shop items. Ever look at where the items are made in the gift shop? Not OSV but China imagine all those early American crafts are made in China It is outrageous!!!! Not a good move OSV

  2. OSV keeps releasing info on how great OSV is doing financially it is our best year ever, highest attendance in years, so why outsource another segment of your living museum? OSV admits outsourcing food service, IT, retail, human resources, and financial services. Maybe this was decided by the outsourced financial services to outsource security. Bad move OSV.

  3. Just LIstening InSunday, February 20, 2011

    Like many companies, OSV is outsourcing tasks that others can perform for less money. Nothing wrong with that. The idea is to stay afloat, and not to waste money on things it can save money on. Basic business. They don't grow their own coffee, but sell it. They went to the people who do that better than they could. Remember, the idea is to support the institution that has served us all for over 60 years, and getting the most bang for the buck. Our schools outsource, as do our businesses, churches, , we all do to an extent. It is not like the costumed interpreters are being played online by residents of New Delhi.


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