• Hard, Valuable, Fun (HVF) Business Simulations

    I recently listened to a How I Built This podcast featuring Max Levchin (founder of Paypal and Affirm). In the podcast Max discusses the acronym HVF. An interview with Eric Scott, one of Levchin’s colleagues, provides us with the following background/description of HVF: Max was working on an incredibly technically hard problem (at PayPal) and…

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  • When the Going Gets Tough, Tough Companies Get Investing

    What’s scarier than investing in your company in the midst of an economic downturn?  Not investing in your company in the midst of an economic downturn.  An HBR article describes how well thought-out investments (while biting your nails) during an economic pullback can actually position a company better for the future. But that takes courage…

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  • The First Business Simulation

    I’m guessing you will be as surprised as I am to learn that one of the first text games with “back-and-forth natural language interaction between a human and computer” was Top Management Decision Simulation[1], the first business simulation. Top Management Decision Simulation was developed in 1957 by the American Management Association (AMA). Its goal was…

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  • Spiraling Out of Control – Wages and Prices

    Unless you’ve been hiding in your basement for the last couple of months (understandable if you were), you’ve probably heard about the dreaded Wage-Price Spiral (WPS) that many economists are predicting. A WPS can occur when prices rise, causing workers to demand higher wages.  Companies then raise prices again to cover their now-higher wage expense…

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  • New CEOs – Do Only the Things Only You Can Do

    Being a CEO is tough.  But…what do they actually do, anyway?  Aren’t all of the other people at the company doing all of the actual work?  Maybe so, but we still need CEOs.  According to a McKinsey study, the things that CEOs do create 45 percent – almost half – of a company’s performance results….

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  • Sim Tips Videos – Seeing (a business simulation) is Believing

    When you have a question about PowerPoint or Excel, or even about how to change the oil in your car, where do you go to get the answer – YouTube, or to the 100-page user manual in 8-point font sitting on your bookshelf? If you’re like most people, you’re a visual learner and you go…

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  • This Blog Post Is Taxing. It’s About Taxes

    Economist John Maynard Keynes said that avoiding taxes was “…the only intellectual pursuit that carries any reward.”  But in the case of book income vs. tax income, all rewarding things must come to an end.  A minimum corporate tax in the US has been proposed that would be based on the book income of large…

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  • Teaching a Business Simulation Class – Team or Solo Sport?

    It’s been said that there is no ‘I’ in Team, but that there is an ‘m’ and an ‘e’. Given that dichotomy, when it comes to teaching a business simulation class, what’s better – a Team or a ‘me’ approach? Like deciding whether to turn a car right or left at an intersection, it depends…

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  • Saying Goodbye (to a Supply Chain Partner) Is Hard To Do

    The global supply chain just played a real-world version of MIT’s “The Beer Game” – and lost.  And due to soaring costs and super-slow deliveries, a breakup with China may now be in the offing.  Maybe we should have just stayed home… As discussed in a previous PriSim post, no matter the industry, your company…

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  • Even-Start or Unique Starting Point for Teams in Business Simulations?

    Running a business is complex! There are many interrelated/interconnected dynamics and activities that need to work together to drive total company performance. To focus participants’ time and thoughts on the most important issues, business simulations need to limit the scope of marketplace dynamics and thus participants’ decisions. One way to accomplish this is to have…

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