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Micro Plan

This course is modular (approximately 2 hourly sessions) and can be completed in 30 hours. It is advisable to have between 15 and 24 participants per group.

1. Business Simulation

1.1 What’s Business Simulation?

The game is in essence not a game at all. It is a carefully constructed business skills development tool masquerading as a game.

The game is interactive and experientially based. It simulates real market conditions and business scenarios in the training room.

The process gets participants to weigh up information, make decisions and react to the consequences. Participants see the results of their actions and experience the thrills and spills of real life business activity.

The game is a facilitator’s dream because it practically runs itself. As participants compete with each other to succeed in business, the debates get intense, decisions get weightier and the results provoke emotions of success and failure. The result ? Light bulbs flash, paradigm shifts occur and vital learning points stick.

Hundreds of business development organisations worldwide incorporate the game into their own training programmes.

1.2 Why the game works?

  • Participants play in three teams that each represent a business. The simulation is played with ‘real’ money that is borrowed from the bank and has to be repaid with interest, at the end of the ‘month’.
  • The winning team is the one that best manages and grows their business in the face of stiff competition and unexpected crises.
  • Every lesson is learned from the players’ actual experiences in the game
  • Players learn by group discussion
  • Only basic literacy and numeracy skills are required
  • It takes only two hours to set up, play and discuss each module
  • It’s great fun to play!

1.3 The Teaching Methodology

The Discovery Learning method used is experiential in nature – it is about learning through doing. By playing the simulation, participants learn lessons for themselves from their decisions and mistakes.

Implementation

The Business Simulation is supported by facilitator training (contact . for international use, or www.entrepreneurship.co.za for South African use). Everything needed by a facilitator to run the programme is in each Business Simulation hold-all bag, including:

  • A Facilitator’s Manual that easily leads the trainer through the programme, explains the theoretical business concepts, and provides instructions to be given to participants
  • Step-by-step instructions for how to run the simulation
  • All other materials for the simulation
  • Learning activity work-cards for participants

2. Money Planner

Money Planner challenges participants to draw up financial statements using the costs and sales data generated by the business simulation.

2.1 Participants:

  • build a cash-flow statement based on the transactions conducted during one month of business.
  • create an income statement to reflect their profits (or losses).
  • create a balance sheet to reflect the growth (or contraction) in the value of their simulated businesses.

This is an invaluable tool to empower employees to grasp the impact of their own productivity on their company. Money planner also challenges participants to draw up a personal budget.

3. Business Planner

Building on the experience of the Business Simulation, Business Planner challenges participants to apply thirteen business planning concepts to their experience of the simulation.  Participants then use the same concepts to write a business plan for their own business (or business idea). Participants take away their own simple business plan for a micro or small business

3.1 Planning Concepts

  • Business strategy
  • Business partners
  • Features and benefits
  • Customers
  • Competitors
  • Promotional plan
  • Fixed Costs
  • Variable Costs
  • Pricing and Margins
  • Profitability
  • Break-even
  • Cash flow
  • Profit and loss

4. Business Ideas Generator – BIG

The BIG is a creative brainstorming module for the development of new product and service ideas.

4.1 The Business Ideas Generator (BIG):

  • is designed primarily for people who want to start a business but haven’t yet decided on a business idea.
  • challenges participants to identify opportunities for products and services based on:
  • their skills;
  • the networks of people they know;
  • activities they enjoy;
  • places they know well;
  • individuals whose needs they understand.

5. “Reaching my own markets” Module

The BEST Game’s “Reaching my own markets’” module specifically addresses the marketing issues that have created problems for particular manufacturing businesses. Its specific objectives are:

  • Making the learning from the simulation real for each participant’s own business.
  • Providing tools and skills for participants to use in their own business situation.
  • Getting participants to try out new marketing approaches in their own business
  • The module outcomes are:
    • Brainstorming and Identifying my own markets
    • Dividing my market into accessible segments
    • Building a practical strategy to reach each segment
    • Implementing the strategy for each segment
    • Using practical lists and tools to interact with the market
    • Talking to customers
    • Analysing customer feedback
    • Closing deals
    • Keeping customers satisfied

The module covers the very practical issues that are unique to each business by ensuring that participants have a real sustainable market which can assist them to calculate a real breakeven etc. The module content includes:

  • Selling informally (to the Community)
    • Don’t just stand there and wait for them to come to you!
    • How can you get them interested in buying from you?
    • Plan to visit every household in the community.
    • Building relationships
    • Tell them that you would like to sell to them on a regular basis
    • Show them how proud you are of your quality.
    • Tell them how competitive your prices are.
    • Talk about the benefits of buying from you instead of from shops.
    • Write down their name and address.
    • Groups are encouraged to visit all their neighbours and fill in details of their visits.
  • Selling formally to buyers and shops (on Contract)
    • Start Small, Start somewhere, Just Start!
    • The biggest barrier is in your head!
    • Prepare yourself.
    • Know how much you can produce and what you have to sell.
    • Know all about your quality.
    • Be able to explain why you will be a reliable supplier.
    • Making the first contact
    • The first meeting
    • Getting the first order
    • Putting the details together
    • Concluding the deal
    • Get it in writing!
    • Keeping the customer – Growing the relationship and keeping it happy

6. Business Basics

This is a comprehensive introduction to business course that builds on the simulation. The programme provides participants with the opportunity to learn business skills and concepts using activity work cards, and then put this theory into practice in a simulated business environment. Skills and concepts are enacted and reinforced during the simulation. Modular in nature, training can be scheduled in time slots that suit your needs.

6.1 Business Concepts

  • Basic business cycle
  • Buying
  • Adding value
  • Selling for profit
  • Selling on credit
  • Allocating income
  • Basic record keeping
  • Supply and demand
  • Costing
  • Understanding the market
  • Negotiating/selling
  • Marketing strategy
  • Pricing
  • Production techniques

Products

  • Best Game (Info Tech)

    The BEST GAME is in essence not a game at all. It is a carefully constructed business skills development tool masquerading as a game. The BEST GAME is interactive and experientially based. It simulates real market conditions and business scenarios in the training room. The process gets participants to weigh up information, make decisions and […]

  • Best Game (Enterprise)

    The BEST GAME is in essence not a game at all. It is a carefully constructed business skills development tool masquerading as a game. The BEST GAME is interactive and experientially based. It simulates real market conditions and business scenarios in the training room. The process gets participants to weigh up information, make decisions and […]