Becoming aquainted with companies through "games"!

An important element of modern societies is the organization. At school, at university, or in a company: organizational elements can be determined in the various different areas of responsibility. In order to make those organizations work efficiently, the right decisions have to be made, whereupon the harmonious cooperation of all departments of the organizations has to be considered. In order to investigate this harmonious cooperation and its influence on the overall success of a company, the Otto von Guericke University offers its students the compact course "iDECOR" in the course of which they can access the "stressful" world of real organizations through "games".

What is iDECOR?

The abbreviation iDECOR stands for DECisions in ORganizations, and was later expanded by internet competences, international aspects and integration of ERP-approaches. Generally, a type of simulation is implemented in the course of which three companies compete against each other in order to realize the launch of three products in three markets. Those three companies are depicted by three student teams. The participants invest and realize their knowledge in different areas with an exciting atmosphere. Therefore, decisions have to be made in the fields of marketing, producing, investment, funding, and planning. Thereby the students develop their skills and fuse in a realistic game.

Who can "join the game"?

Basically, students of the advanced study period are intended to participate in this business game. They are supposed to combine their theoretical studies with reality through joining the business game. But nevertheless, interested people outside the university can also get the chance to pariticipate in the game and thereby realize their training and further education in an interactive form.

How is the game constructed?

The game is based on a business model, whereupon each enterprise tries to win a huge success through certain strategies such as product expansion, market expansion or diversification. In contrast to most business games, iDECOR does not apply to the market share model, but to the product lifecycle. The student teams will generally start the game at a certain circumstance that ermerges from a long phase of development. At the beginning of the game the teams thus have to decide with which strategy their company is meant to be developed. In this case, three different types of areas of responsibility can be distinguished:

  1. the central management
  2. the sales management
  3. the production management

The enterprise could be developed through three expansion stages:

  1. branch office
  2. distribution center
  3. commerical unit

Relaxation increases when the members of each team decide for certain tasks within the enterprise, in which they let their scientific and practical experience flow into the game. Therefore it is crucial to create a solid basis of communication and cooperation within the teams in order to be able to realize the applied strategies efficiently and without problems. The following detailled steps as well as all potential emphases or questions of this game will of course be explained and described in the context of an introduction at the beginning of the seminar. All participants will receive a script in which all information about the organizational structure and the rules of the game are being explained.

What does one need to bring along?

In order to enjoy the athmosphere of the game and to reach the desired objectives, all participants should bring along a good humor! This is especially important for working in a friendly, challenging, and sometimes stressful atmosphere. In addition to those "social competences", basic knowledge in economics is an advantage since the planning/the calculation of necessary steps for the development of the enterprise is not conducted via computer, but via calculators and printed reports.

Is it fun?

iDECOR is more than just a business game. People work together, do research, calculate, learn, and, of course, play! Business games therefore offer the chance to experience knowledge in a different way than in the course of an ordinary lecture. Participants who participate actively, could not only gain knowledge, but also new friends. Of course, iDECOR has not only brought together smart people, but also hearts and emotions. At the end of each seminar - just as in real life -  there are winners and losers. Nevertheless, all participants celebrate their knew knowledge gained with fun, friendliness and excitement through the business game in virtual enterprises, regardless of whether they are winners or losers.