Let me tell you about how a big industrial and technology fortune 100 company wants to tackle global growth: financial acumen leadership development for local teams. On such a massive scale this seems easier said than done.

Sharon Collins is a senior consultant based in the Southeast United States. Since 1998 she has been partnering with multinational organizations combining their strategy with collaborative business simulations increasing engagement and alignment to business results.

The power of an integrated message

As a public company, they communicate progress through quarterly town hall meetings with the goal of noting progress on their strategy with all the local regions. To boost a more thorough understanding of financial terms and concepts, the organization sought a new way of learning that enables the teams to quickly grasp new ideas relevant to their job.

In my experience with this company, I have come to understand how important connecting the dots between the global strategy and local operations is. To better achieve this result, in 2014 the organization launched a worldwide learning journey featuring a combination of targeted initiatives. The first step was to implement our Celemi Apples & Oranges™ simulation to demystify concepts like working capital or cash flow. In addition, a nominated group of high potential leaders experienced Celemi Decision Base™, a business simulation to strengthen strategic thinking, leadership behaviors and actions with strong business acumen to drive results.

These two solutions, together with Celemi’s other simulations (Celemi Tango™, Celemi Enterprise™ and Celemi Performance™), created a dynamic and integrated learning environment that provided teams with the tools to better grasp the business side of the company global operations.

The simulations also leveraged real updated company figures and the structure of the program was tailored to reflect the organization workflow, aiming to provide relevant discussions that stimulated a new way to look at their impact on the business.

The key vantage points of this approach are clear: advance the corporate message further into all the branches of the organization and enable the employees to fully utilize the information obtained in the town hall meetings. This was especially crucial when some sites of the company were experiencing a restructuring and understanding the reasons behind the decisions from a global perspective helped managers communicate to their staff as they saw the financial benefits in the simulation.

Also, engaging participants to get involved in the business through a simulation has opened thinking, creating new conversations that include the “so what” to decisions. As the organization continues to respond to market shifts, this experience is creating agile leaders capable of meeting challenges and contributing to a growth agenda.

In an increasingly connected world, no brand can afford to concentrate a growth effort on a single region. While sometimes progress can take different forms, in my opinion, it needs to be an integrated strategy, involving all ranks of the organizations, and all its locations.