Computer based simulation

Every participant becomes part of a team who will run a virtual $ 100 millions company and will receive information about your company (sales figures, financial data etc) and information about a market (market shares, consumer perceptions, etc.). You use this information to make strategic decisions about running your company. You then translate that strategy into practical, specific decisions on pricing, advertising spend, what new products you want to launch and so on, production capacity, ordering quantites etc.

The decisions that you make are put into the computer, along with the decisions of the other four teams. The 'simulation' imitates a real market the key players of which are your team and your competitors. It uses the decisions to calculate how the markets will move. The simulation then produces new company information (gr) and market research. The reports are printed and handed to you in order to base on them your next business cycle decisions. By studying these new reports you can see how your company is fairing. Did your market share increase? Are profits up or down? Did awareness of your brands increase? Which segments of customers did you attract?

A seminar usually involves 3 to 4 such decisions, and after each round there is feedback based on a graphs (gr) based analysis of the modified situation of the market (see example that follows). The feedback aims to get you to think more about each of the variables, and to play at a higher level each time. There is so much to pick up that the longer people play the more time they want for their decisions.

As in real life, some teams win and others do less well, and this slightly competitive atmosphere makes a simulation a particularly compelling way to learn.

The computer model ensures that the analysis can go to a very high level of detail, if requested by the participants.

Finally, all teams have the ability of using special software that aids them take their decisions summarizing previous business cycles results.