Posted 17 July 2009 - 01:19 PM
This part of the course is really a disgrace and denial of competitiveness among humans and business corporations.
First off, the scenario created by the game can NEVER happen in the real world, even if everyone involved is truly motivated to achieve the desirable outcome. Why? According to the staff, a 'successful' play of the game results in everyone gaining $$$$ and profit.
To look at this from an economist standpoint, this is impossible. There is a set amount of wealth available in the world. For simplistic terms, lets just say $1000 total of wealth exists. If Person A-D all start with 250 each, THERE IS NO WAY that they can increase their collective wealth, as no more exists. The amount is capped.
Now, the game effectively generates wealth. If everyone cooperates, everyone may end with 500 each. This would mean there was a total of 2000 in the wealth system, that only had 1000 before the game started. This means that:
a. an impossible feat occured, creating wealth from nothing
b. more money was printed, thus decreasing the value of the money by half
You cannot generate wealth out of nothing
Next, look at this in a business perspective.
Toyota, GM, Honda, and Ford can all cooperate together and each will earn (simplified) 400 dollars each.
However, Ford decides that if he doesn't cooperate, his company can earn 2000 dollars total, while causing GM Honda and Toyota to lose money. Ford repeats this a few times, and eventually he is rolling in money and the other companies are out of business, as they went broke. Ford now gets practically every dollar spent to car companies, and makes more and more and more. Tell me this isn't the dream of every executive, do do business in such an efficient way that it drives out the competition.
This game is just like communistic ideal. Under communism, if it worked, everyone would have at least 5x the wealth that they now have. Everyone would have an adequate house, big tv, etc. It would be better overall for everyone. But it doesn't work. Why? Joe sees that he can go to work and not work hard at all, and still get the same benefits as all the hard workers get. Larry sees joe not working and decides that if Joe doesn't work and gets everything, why should he work? A slippery slope dissolves into collapse
This game is the same way. If all the companies worked together, every company would be better off. Production plants and inventions would be shared, resulting in a better overall product. But it doesn't work. Bottom line is that companies are driven by profits, and execs only care about their company. If they can earn an extra 800 a month, at the expense of 4 other companies losing 200 a month each, they do it.
Say the total amount spent on cars by consumers is 10,000 (simplified). No matter what the companies do, only this amount will be spent. The pool of available wealth is capped.
If everyone cooperates, each of 4 companies makes 2500 each.
But, Company B develops a new extra fuel efficient car. It can either share that technology with the other companies, and keep it equal at 2500 OR he can use it himself, and make much more money.
Now the breakdown is: Total 10000
A - 1500
B - 6500
C - 1500
D - 1500
Company B tripled their wealth at the expense of the other companies. It has to be this way, as there is only so much money that exists or is spent. Company B goes on to have employees driving 50,000 dollar cars and moving into gated neighborhoods.
A,C, and D go on to pay less and less and lay off employees. Their employees are lucky if they can afford the rent and other things.
Company B is more successful, and all because it did not follow the principles of the game of life. The execs of company B are determined to be successfuly and smart, and the other execs are stupid and failures.
Now apply the game of life to the NFL.
Not everyone can win in the NFL. The game of life would have it where the teams just ran kneeldowns over and over and no one ever scored. Every game would end in a tie. Thus, there would be no losers and that would greatly help the 'self esteem' of all the players. Every team would win 1/32 share of the SB every year. How many coaches are gonna go for that?
The Game of Life cannot be applied to real life.
I have to say, using my real life business skills, I analyzed the instruction card and saw that the only way I could lose is if every team held up the same color. I used math and saw that as long as I held up Red, 15/16 of the time I would win ((1/4)^4) at random. I knew immediately that this was 94% chance of winning. If any business had this sort of chance, they would jump on it immediately. The game ended with our team being one of the only ones to use real life principles laughing among ourselves at the other teams that were totally SHOCKED they were losing money.
I guess that shows that being naive in the business world is not a good thing. Everyone is looking to make the bottom line higher and meet the line.
Now, if you don't want to read a sentence from the syllabus, don't read it below.
The syllabus suggests that after the game is over, as emotions will be running high, to join everyone together again by singing a song.
Does this not say manipulation? The course creators think they can just manipulate everyone's emotions at will. That is an insult to me.
Think superbowl. Do they give the losers a trophy to consle them and the winners together? No. The winners won, they have something to be proud of. The losers don't, except making it to the SB, and they were rewarded for that in ther conf champ game.
This game is a complete disgrace to competitive spirit and the principles that successful businesses are founded on.