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"People just don't understand how their actions affect our company's performance. They work in stovepipes. They don't understand how to make money. We don't undertand our costs. We are probably inefficient, if we knew how to measure efficiency. The shareholders will be screaming at is soon. Our competitors are stealing a march on us every single day. We have a strategy, but we need everyone to be pulling in the same direction."

If people only understood what it is like to run a business..!


Decision Base

What is it?

Decision Base is a business simulation which can be run over 2 days or longer (depending on any additional content you wish to build in) and for groups of between 9 and 24 participants, working in teams. Participants take over the running of a capital-intensive business, taking on the specific roles of production, finance, marketing & sales, and corporate intelligence. Each team is in competition with the others, and the actions of each team will impact the others.

Each team makes strategic decisions around market development, product development, capital investment in production capacity, and financing. Then they strive to implement the strategy and the consequent operational challenges in a highly competitive and changing environment, competing for customers, negotiating with financiers, responding to external events, balancing cash flow and profitability, and reporting on financial and business performance.

What does it cover?

Decision Base covers many business issues (and more can be added - see below). In creating a tension between the various business functions, participants can be exposed to issues including:

  • Business strategy - large or small, cost-focus or differentiation, global or niche player?
  • Cash flow management
  • Working capital management
  • Capital structure
  • Short term versus long term results
  • Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
  • Efficiency versus flexibility
  • Leader or follower?
  • Long term capital investment decisions
  • Financial statements and financial analysis

We frequently adapt elements of the simulation to reflect sepcific client and industry issues, such as:

  • Business plans
  • Shareholder management and accountability
  • Business strategy input
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • "Wild Cards" to reflect client and industry issues
  • Cash flow planning
  • Capital investment appraisal techniques (e.g. Discounted Cash Flow, Payback)

Who is it for?

The simulation is suited to a wide range of managerial roles, particularly in organisations where an understanding of the role of other functions, and the bigger picture, is important. It is suitable right up to senior management level (the simulation generates a strategic discussion about the client organisation), and is also excellent for more junior managers in getting to grips with how the various functions of a business need to work together.

What are the benefits?

Participants in Decision Base are better able to:

  • Balance the competing pressures of long term strategy with short term drivers
  • Understand the issues facing a business from a strategic perspective
  • Calculate and analyse business performance through financial statements, financial ratios, and key performance indicators (KPIS)
  • Understand the inter-dependencies between different parts of a business
  • Have a better understanding of, and empathy with, their own customers (e.g. as Relationship Managers and Relationship Directors in banking)
  • Create business plans to raise long term finance
  • Relate operational business activity to shareholder drivers such as Return on Equity

Contact us

We at X Learning have many years of experience in running Decision Base in many business sectors in Europe, Middle East and North Africa. More widely, Decision Base has been run successfully on thousands of occasions around the world through Celemi's business partners. You can see client testimonials at Celemi.

Please contact us to find out more and to discuss your requirements.


Phone: 0191 4067130 or 01908 764360