Winning at Business, Winning at Grace College
Would you purchase a pair of shoes made by a company called Crazy Footwear, Inc.? If you were four business students at Grace College, participating in the Business Strategy Game, then you would certainly hope so. The Business Strategy Game (BSG) is an online game where students are assigned to manage an athletic footwear company. They compete against other virtual footwear companies run by classmates and students from other colleges.
BSG, the premier business simulation game around the world, was created at the University of Alabama by Arthur A. Thompson Jr., Professor Emeritus, Greg J. Stappenbeck, and Mark A. Reidenbach of GLO-BUS Software, Inc. In its eleventh year of business, this corporate level training tool is used every year by over 55,000 students at over 600 schools worldwide. This year alone, it has been used in 2,795 classes in 50 different countries.
Senior Seminar Management is taught by Professor Alan Grossnickle. Four Grace students took part in this world-wide competition. Eli Graham, Bairhett Hutchens, Micah Knoblock and Torrey Matthes formed the team. At one point along the way, they were tied for first in this simulation.
The BSG scoring system is based on various factors, all relating to real-world business principles. According to its own site, “The co-managers of each company are responsible for assessing market conditions, determining how to respond to the actions of competitors, forging a long-term direction and strategy for their company, forecasting upcoming sales volumes, and making decisions based on those many variables.”
Torrey, speaking on behalf of the team, said, “they spent a lot of time together early on, [figuring] out the game and how everything worked. As the game progressed, we developed a better feel for how to implement our strategies.”
Since the simulation is based on real-world business principles, the biggest lessons were understanding the implications of their decisions. The goal is to optimize both company success and increased shareholder value. They did this by focusing on making decisions that would improve efficiency without sacrificing quality.
Professor Grossnickle, who has taught this class 18 times, said “these are the best scores any student team has ever achieved.” Hitting the Top 100 in early November, they continued to perform consistently, reaching the Top 10 by the end of the competition.
Two of the teammates, Micah and Torrey, both of whom majored in Accounting and plan to work in CPA firms, after taking the exams this summer. Eli, a December graduate, is already working as a Senior Service Manager and Portal Specialist at PolyWood in Syracuse. All spoke enthusiastically of their experience during the Business Strategy Game, noting its real-world application.
This is a tremendous accomplishment for the students and the School of Business here at Grace College. If you would like to pursue a business degree from a school that will train you to perform at a high level, you can get started here.