Developing management skills with TOPSIM – Production & Services at trainM

trainM specializes in supporting employee development in organizations as well as designing and conducting leadership trainings. For various companies trainM regularly offer in-house-seminars, in which they use, among other things, business simulations powered by TOPSIM. In this article, Stefan Licht (responsible for training and business development at trainM) shares his experience with TOPSIM – Production & Services in his latest seminar.

Stefan Licht designed a training for developing management skills for executives of the Bundeswehr. Participants came from various fields, including business administration, pedagogy or even engineering. All of them were academics and already had professional experience. What was missing is the look at ‘correlations‘ within managing a business. The training with TOPSIM – Production & Services was used to develop understanding of business processes and get to know the work of other departments.

On-site seminar with safety concept

Normally up to 12 persons would take part in a training, however due to the COVID-19 developments, all on-site event concepts had to be changed to meet the latest safety guidelines – so that everyone can learn in a safe environment. That means: more rooms and space with a reduced number of participants. At the end, just seven people participated in the seminar.

The training usually take two to three days and consist of theory units and periods from the simulation, which enable participants to apply their knowledge in a realistic virtual environment. To reduce the contacts within the group, only one to two people built a team. Bigger groups would be better to develop team working skills, nevertheless, the playful competition gave enough motivation.

TOPSIM Prodcution & Services Seminar with TrainM

Before the simulation started, the teams had to work on their strategy. The seminar was divided into thematic blocks covering a wide range of topics, from sustainability to financial optimization. The business simulation served as a tool to address the topics practically. At the end, the participants took part at a fictional investors’ conference: each company had to present their strategy for the upcoming three business years. The winner team was defined by the evaluation of the business simulation as well as the final presentation.

Why TOPSIM – Production & Services?

The key aspects of the training conducted by trainM always differ: sometimes the focus is on strategy and business development, sometimes, like in this training, the focus is on process. TOPSIM – Production & Services fits for this mixed target group, because nobody is an ‘expert’. The simulation offers the possibility to show different areas and procedures of a company without getting too detailed. Different parameters can be considered without getting entangled in large calculations.

Stefan Licht praised the use of a business simulation in a seminar: the networked thinking in the simulation promotes the didactic context of the entire event. The feedback of the participants, too, has been positive all the way. The participants get to know different correlations without getting into too much details and mathematics. The simulation brings in fun and helps understanding the work from other departments.

A huge thanks to Stefan Licht for this insight in this successful training. We hope that more exciting events are to come – both completely online and on-site.

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