are included in the free "Getting Started" course
Class 1: Performance Through Time
Whether we want to grow the business cash-flow, fix poor service quality, or fight off a competitive threat, improvements will happen over time. So the starting point for any business plan, or for tackling any challenge, is a clear definition and picture of how key performance outcomes have changed up to now, and may change into the future. This class shows how to specify this performance-over-time for one or more indicators, and how to set this up as a time-chart so that the model we build will show exactly how that improvement will happen.
Class 2: Stocks, Decisions, External factors and performance
We know that resources drive performance - customers drive sales, staff and capacity drive our ability to serve those customers and fulfil those sales. So we can understand changing performance much better if we lay out these causal relationships rigorously, including the simple arithmetic defining how each item depends on others. And those factors driving performance must also be changing, so this class shows the value of displaying time-charts on those factors too - rates of change for customer-numbers, purchase rates, staffing, productivity, and so on.
Class 3: Stocks accumulate and deplete
If performance is driven by the resources we have, then our business or department can deliver sustained, strong performance by building and retaining those resources. These so-called Stocks "accumulate" - filling up and draining away over time. In many cases, big improvements can be made by giving proper attention to driving the in-flow and limiting the out-flow, using time-charts to show how those win- and loss-rates are changing.
Class 4: Interdependence, feedback and the core system
This is where you get the "joined up" view of the business you always wanted! Growing and retaining resources strongly always depends on what we already have - strong products win customers, service staff retain customers, work-pressure drives staff losses, and so on. These are more than obvious principles - you can quantify and model these causal relationships. Interdependencies also lead, always, to feedback. So we can create reinforcing feedback that drives growth, and cut out 'balancing' feedback so that too-limited resources do not hold us back When all such relationships are added, you have a core working model that explains the performance of the organisation or function, or of any challenge you take on.
Class 5: Modeling the changing quality of Stocks
We don’t just want more customers, staff and products; we want better customers, staff and products. (Some cases even get stronger performance from a smaller, better-quality business!) This class shows how to attach quality-measures to any resource-Stock, how to model the mechanisms that cause this quality to rise or fall, and how to use such models to improve the quality of our customers, staff or product-range.
Class 6: Stock-development, pipelines and aging-chains
Business development is often "stuck" because we can’t develop resources fast enough - growing managers and leaders, converting customer interest into active customers and sales, launching attractive products, for example. Well-proven models not only capture how resources move through these pipelines, but also show how to manage the many flows that drive their performance - hiring, promotion and retention of staff at each level; driving customer-trial and loyalty, and so on. This class shows how to model these development processes, and use these models to generate stronger results.
Class 7: Modeling competition
We all want to fight off competition, to win and hold on to the customers, staff and other scarce resources we need - especially if that weakens our rivals! It turns out that just three standard structures explain every competitive situation and, as before, you can do much more than simply describe the principles - you can quantify and model exactly how competition plays out over time. Armed with these models, you can make much better decisions on pricing, marketing, customer support and so on, to get much better results - even driving competitors out of your way. Similar models also capture competition for staff, intermediaries and other critical resources.
Class 8: Modeling Policies to automate Decisions
Some decisions are so routine that we have "policies" to guide our choices in any period. We show how to use the difference between current performance with targets in order to model such policies and test difference decision-rules.
Class 9: Modeling Intangible factors and their impact
Everyone knows that reputation and staff morale are important, that knowledge is powerful, and that building quality is critical. But although we often measure these factors, it is not so easy to manage them or to work out their impact on performance. This class shows how to specify three categories of intangible factor, concerning state-of-mind for customers and staff, information-based factors, and quality-related items. You will also learn how to model the mechanisms causing these intangibles to grow and decline, how to manage those processes to keep them strong, and how to work out their changing impact on tangible resources and business performance.
Class 10: Capabilities and learning
Powerfully successful organisations seem to have an ability to just get better and better at everything they need to do - launching great products, building super-loyal customers and great staff, entering new markets, making acquisitions, and so on. You too might achieve great potential if you could better manage how these capabilities get built. In this class you will see how to model a capability by quantifying and combining the development of people and skills involved in a task with effective processes and with the necessary information. Learning is easily modeled as the growth of skills and capabilities, driven by experience at doing the activity.