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Why Simulation Makes It Different

Accelerated Learning

A ManSims Workshop’s unique value is rooted in the “Accelerated Learning “ that accompanies the effective utilization of Management Simulation.  Our cutting-edge Management Simulation software is used throughout the Workshop to provide the participants the ability to not only learn knowledge, skills, and techniques, but to practice their application.  The feedback offered by seeing the results of your decisions is the closest thing to having real life experience. Our Workshops compress as much as six months of experience into a few days.   The Result?  Amazing expertise and insight gained in a short period of time.  An incredibly more effective and skilled Decision Maker.  An Employee that is much more likely to exceed his/her goals.

Learning Theories

The extensive body of knowledge on how we learn speaks of the phases we go through as we learn.  Skills taught don’t become ingrained and truly “learned” until they are practiced.  And proficiency only comes with repetition and experience.  Traditional classroom training, based on lectures, presentations and maybe an occasional exercise, can only bring you to a level we call Student.  At this level, you’ve heard information but had no chance to practice it.  Often courses provide follow-up exercises or offer to sell additional tools like books and tapes to help root the knowledge and skills.

A ManSims Workshop goes well beyond that, providing in the Workshop all of the “practice” to move up several significant levels in the learning process.  There is no requirement for the Student to follow-through on his or her own to embed the skills.  Our point of view is that, indeed, no learning has taken place unless we are doing something different as a result.  A ManSims Workshop, through the experience of the Simulation, provides the confidence to use and apply the skills upon leaving the Workshop.


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Other Key Learning Theories Employed

Our Management Simulations create dynamic scenarios, with all the realism and randomness of life.  The Simulation takes the Cognitive learning process and adds the Experiential.   The opportunity to put the knowledge, skills and techniques learned to work in a real life setting powers the learnings to a higher level.  The feedback loop of seeing the responses and reactions to your decisions, repeated on a weekly basis over 21 to 26 weeks in the Simulation, is our Holy Grail of learning.  Further, working through the Simulation becomes, by no mistake, an emotionally charged event.  Learning retention is extraordinarily high when that emotional component is present.

We call the Teacher of a ManSims Workshop a “Guide”.   That’s because a key component of a good Workshop’s design is that not all teachings should be taught, but Participants led to self-discovery.  When we learn for ourselves, lessons tend to stick more than something we are told.  You’ll see this occur through the Simulation too.

So a ManSims Workshop employs numerous facets of advanced learning theories, all designed to be the most powerful and charged learning environment possible.

How The Workshop and Simulation Works

Workshops are run by skilled Guides, highly trained in the unique nuances of maximizing learning through Simulation-based courseware.  Our Guides are much more just Trainers too, they each are individually selected for the important expertise and life experience they bring in their discipline.  All of our advanced Workshops are run by a Guide and are often augmented by the participation of a Subject Matter Expert with serious industry credentials.   The depth of the experience of our Guides and Subject Matter Experts are reason enough to want to be with these folks for several days.

ManSims Management Simulation Workshops include traditional training, it just doesn’t stop there.  Guides teach important information using typical computer graphics-based presentations, and most of the first day will be taught in this format.  The second day and on sees the Simulation become well intertwined with additional chapters of learning.

In a ManSims version of a Simulation, you are placed into a Company in what feels like a very real job with a realistic landscape around you.  There are Corporate Policies, Budgets, and Strategic Plans.  You join a Team of three or four other Workshop Participants and are provided a Strategic Corporate Management Initiative.   Your Team makes group decisions towards running the project.  You are provided a Budget, a Core Team, Primary and Secondary Target Accomplishments, and a Schedule.  Working in a Team (not all learning occurs through virtual relationships), you Hire/Release and Direct Resources towards meeting your Goals.  You practice application of techniques taught and see how they work.  You’ll discover Pitfalls, evaluate Risks, make Judgment calls.  You’ll make mistakes, without them costing you your (real) job or the Company anything but its (virtual) success.

Our Management Simulations, also sometimes called Business Simulations, utilize advanced software technologies, incorporating Artificial Intelligence, Neural Networks and Heuristics.  What it means is that, like life, the Simulation has features of Randomness.  No two Simulation runs ever produce the exact same results.  This is not simple software that can ever be manipulated after learning the basics of how it works.  And the Simulations will produce unexpected events. The software does a wonderful job of recreating the more interesting aspects of real life, like reflecting personalities and politics.  That means that there are serious embedded soft skills that will be learned through the process, too.

So, after having planned your Strategy, adjusted it to changing circumstances, and done your best to meet the Goals given you in the Simulation, you’ll be exhausted.  You’ve compressed the critical experiential learning phases with no loss of quality.   And you’ll believe more in yourself and your abilities, and with good reason.  Now you’re ready for the real world, and you’ll be more effective in it.  Confident and ready to use those skills.

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