Why are Business Simulations so Effective?

Tuesday, December 13, 2011 | Category :

By Rommin Adl

Rommin Adl Photo

You’re buckling in for an overseas flight in a brand-new Boeing 777. The pilot comes on the PA: “Ah, ladies and gentlemen, our flight time today will be six and a half hours at a cruising altitude of 33,000 feet. And I should mention that this is the first time I have ever been on a 777. Wish me luck.”

Before setting foot in the real world, pilots, military personnel and disaster response teams use intense simulations to learn how to respond to high-intensity challenges.

Why would we place corporate leaders and their teams in situations without first giving them a chance to try things out? The risks are huge — new strategy investments can run into the hundreds of millions of dollars. But, through customized business simulations, individuals can make critical decisions in a risk-free environment.

A customized business simulation of your enterprise, business unit or process, using real-world competitive dynamics, places leaders in a context where they step out of their normal day-to-day role and gain exposure to the big picture. Participants make decisions in a risk-free environment, allowing them to experience critical interdependencies, execution best practices and the levers they can use to optimize their company’s key performance indicators.

Within minutes of being placed in a simulation, users are grappling with issues and decisions that they must make — now. A year gets compressed into a day or less. Competition among teams spurs engagement, invention and discovery.

Simulations have a broad range of applications, from building deep strategic alignment to developing business acumen to driving leadership development and sales transformation. No matter the application, well-designed business simulations are proven to significantly accelerate the time to value of corporate initiatives. A new strategy can be delivered to a global workforce and execution capability can be developed quickly, consistently and cost-effectively. Back on the job, participants own the new strategy and share their enthusiasm and commitment. Results can be measured in company alignment, team effectiveness, revenue growth and share price.

In the following BTS video, Humana employees discuss the value of a business simulation and the strengths of simulating strategic business decisions.

About the Author: Rommin Adl is an Executive Vice President at BTS.

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