Use the 12-Hour Income|Outcome to develop planning and analysis skills. As decision-makers move pieces on a tabletop game board, they build practical experience in budgeting, forecasting, and measuring performance.

In this simulation, teams manage their companies through a year of operations, looking at short-term results and long-term goals. This involves forecasting and constant decision-making on such issues as pricing, capacity, borrowing, R&D, cost structure, and cash flow.

Learning begins with the Income|Outcome game board and the modeling of simple financial statements for use in tracking the position and performance of a company. Our ‘stealth learning‘ mode really kicks in as teams struggle with the need to manage separately for cash flow and profit. 

Learners gain practical experience in the use of a range of financial planning and analysis tools including cash flow forecasting, budgeting, and ratio analysis. They must deal with a range of business challenges (production efficiency, niche markets, quality improvements) while trying to stay competitive in the market.


In the Finance & Decision-Making workshop, decision makers gain first-hand experience using financial planning and analysis tools to improve business results.

Management uses of financial statements

Separate management of cash and profit

Cost structure and capacity utilization

Control of working capital

How market conditions dominate business decisions

Implementing change and measuring results

The value of budgets and cash flow forecasts

Unit cost analysis

Break-even analysis

Income Statement analysis

ROA, ROI, and other metrics for management

Your company’s specific financial metrics

“I can contribute better to the conversation my clients are having and can better understand the business decisions of the company.” — Jr. Attorney, Dorsey & Whitney


This group experience provides the rules for the simulation, a general introduction to the process of business (financial statements, business terminology, fundamental business dynamics), and sets the framework of needing to manage separately for cash and profit.

Introduction & Fundamentals: 2 – 2.5 hours
Team Competition: 6 – 7 hours
Ratio Analysis (or other KPI): 15 – 45 minutes
Analysis of your company’s financial position: 15 – 45 minutes

Team competition consisting of six business cycles in which teams have full decision-making power and are accountable for the results.

In each cycle, team-based companies develop and implement a business strategy which incorporates real-world dynamics: production capacity, customers, prices, financing, and more. Each cycle includes the following activities:

  • Examining market drivers: supply and demand, niche marketing, quality
  • Competitor awareness, setting prices in a competitive market
  • Ongoing strategic analysis, updating the strategic plan in response to changes in the industry and in the marketplace
  • Budget and cash flow exercises
  • Monitoring cash flow
  • Maintaining the ‘books’ of the operating company (Income Statement and Balance Sheet)
  • Performance measurement and analysis
  • Posting, comparing, and discussion of results

Other activities include competitor analysis, Break-Even analysis, Income Statement analysis and cost-benefit analysis.

We use Visual Finance, a graphic representation of your corporate financial position or industry analysis. Using color, placement and volume to create meaning,  the relationships are made easy to understand and to assess at a glance. Tor example, the Debt-to-Equity ratio is the relationship of red stacks to black stacks. We connect the learning from the classroom to the real world and the tie-back and discussion relate the simulation experience to your company’s concerns, measures, and goals.


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