Recently I played a game called Big Pharma. It seemed interesting because it is a business simulation. It was so interesting that I stayed up until 4AM playing. If you are interested in business simulations and you have extra time or on an airplane, I suggest you give it a try.
Big Pharma Game
As I played, I started wondering if this experience is similar to what it is really like to being the CEO of a real pharmaceutical company. I imagined that much of it is quite similar…perhaps if you removed all the boring meetings and time wasted dealing with lawyers.
Recently I discovered Texas Hold’em Poker on Facebook. I never really enjoyed playing poker very much, but to my surprise it is pretty interesting. Why? Because the more I play poker the more I realize how it is like trading.
Image courtesy Joe King
As I play, I immediately relate many things I have read about trading to what is happening in the game. It seems that many the information in books about trading is totally applicable to poker.
After playing Cashflow 101 and 102 for a few years now, I was pleasantly surprised to find out that you can actually play for free, online. Just go to the Rich Dad site and click on Cashflow.
Update – I didn’t find the link on the home page, but you can get to the game here: https://webgame.richdad.com. If you don’t have an account on the site, go to the homepage and create one. It’s free. Then you should be able to play the Cashflow game for free.
I like Cashflow because it actually teaches people about how to manage their finances. Many people like to write off games as a waste of time, but they are actually a powerful learning tool. We automatically play games the way we play life. So, when we learn how to play a game better, it changes the way we act in life.
I wish it were true for me! After reading many books about leadership and finance, I have come to the conclusion that most of them repeat the common wisdom that permeates business culture in America. I suppose they are better than nothing, but hardly outstanding.
But it is true for Stephen Gillette, the CIO and General Manager of Digital Ventures at Starbucks. Not too shabby for a gamer! Perhaps there is more to leadership than parroting the trite phrases that circulate throughout corporate America. Maybe to become a great leader, we need a good amount of (not so) real world experience.
How did he leverage his online game play into a powerful position of leadership at Starbucks?
As I continue to play Tycoon$, the popular Facebook game, I am struck by how useful it is as a learning tool. Many people write it off as a stupid or unsophisticated game, but I think that it holds many lessons for those of us who discover them. It is interesting to see how things have changed since my first post.
One interesting thing that has happened is that inflation has taken off within the game. Prices are up about 25% in the last month. What has caused this massive inflation?
Recently, I discovered the Tycoon$ game on Facebook. It is an economic simulation game, where you build a business and grow your “empire”. It is still in beta, but I found it very refined and completely bug free.
One thing that is really interesting about the game is that it gives us insight into how markets and economies work. Most people who make the rules for an economy (politicians) do not really know the effects of their policies. They have an idea about what they think is right, or what they think will happen. However, these ideas are based on opinion, or the unproven theories of economics.
Sounds like the stuff of science fiction. But it’s true. OCZ, the maker of high performance computer upgrades designed for gamers, has come up with the ultimate device: a machine that reads your thoughts and sends them directly to the computer. It’s called the Neural Impulse Actuator.
Does it work? Yes. It works so well, in fact, that it allows gamers to obliterate the other guys faster and more effectively than by moving the antiquated mouse. It’s great to be able to enjoy the game, but it’s pretty clear that this device will be a game changer for both computers and humans.