How Strategy Games Can Help Company Leaders

If complex war games have taught us anything, it’s that strategy is everything. You can have the better gunmen and the bigger guns, but if you don’t know where to point them, you’re never going to win. Whether you’re leading an army or a business: bad strategic decisions can have dire consequences. Fail to identify or confront a problem in an early stage and things can go South very quickly. The best leaders take their important decisions by going through a massive amount of data. Information that’s often stored in elaborate and far from easily digestible spreadsheets.

The Europa Universalis series (left) are able to show a ton of information without overwhelming players.

The Europa Universalis series are able to show a ton of information without overwhelming players.

The bigger your business, the more complex the story told by those figures becomes. And the more hours managers have to pour into analyzing them. With the Business Tracker prototype, we set out to present vital business intelligence in a far more engaging and uncluttered way, drawing inspiration and borrowing mechanics from Paradox’s hardcore grand strategy games like Europa Universalis and Crusader Kings.

The result is a simulation of a complex business operation that can be viewed on multiple levels, so you never lose track of vital information. For example, when you zoom in on a division or plant, you get an overview of the managing team for that branch of the company. Zoom in on one member and you can get details on every employee (s)he manages. Color codes indicate how well they are doing at the moment, and that value is defined by real time measuring of KPIs (Key Performance Indicators), like revenue and profit and comparing them to their respective goals.

By compiling the info and spitting it out on a map, it’s fairly easy for company leaders to pinpoint what departments are experiencing problems, why this is happening, and who exactly may need some help. There’s even an event where highly successful employees get headhunted by the competition, so you learn to anticipate different scenarios.

Not a big fan of reading? In this video, we quickly explain the basic idea behind the Business Tracker prototype.

While the prototype’s main focus was to present the concept and used dummy data, if this concept were to be produced, it would be hooked up to various live data feeds. It’s also of note that, while this specific prototype was developed to be used in a, large, geographically scattered business environment, the bottom line of the concept can be of use to any enterprise as the measured values can be altered to suit almost any strategy. We think it’s a wonderful example of how game mechanics can be used to achieve non-game related results and PreviewLabs is extremely proud to have co-created this concept.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *