(Please note: this piece will be published in the interior international DB Schenker Newsletter)
Success of a five-strong team from DB Schenker in Poland: our colleagues have won the Global Open Tournament 2008 and will shortly leave for Cannes to attend a gala presentation of awards.
MEMBERS of the victorious team
The team’s leader: Dariusz Subda - Financial Controlling Manager, Schenker Sp. z o.o.
Piotr Bąbel - Sales Manager in Kielce Branch, Schenker Sp. z o.o.
Mariusz Kozłowski - Development Project Manager, Schenker Sp. z o.o.
Rafał Tarasewicz - Project Manager, Schenker Sp. z o.o.
Arkadiusz Wojtas - Key Account & Tender Manager, Schenker Sp. z o.o.
The team’s name: LOGICART.
(on photo above, from left to right: Rafał Tarasewicz, Arkadiusz Wojtas, Dariusz Subda, Mariusz Kozłowski and Piotr Bąbel)
Global Open Tournament
Global Open Tournament is an international strategic game in which teams representing numerous companies compete for supremacy in the virtual economy. The Tournament is organised by Business Game Factory, the world leader of the internet business games market. This year, the Tournament had its successive, 10th edition. Each edition of the Tournament attracts several hundred teams from companies active in various sectors of the economy and teams representing academic centres.
The game, which is a simulation of market operations, allows the participating teams to test the adopted strategies without getting exposed to a real risk. Additionally, the game offers the players a chance to learn and understand the business language, and to become acquainted with useful business indicators and factors decisive for the growth and profitability of enterprises.
”Every team, which comprises from three to five persons, assumes the role of a management board which is expected to run an international firm in a way that not only permits that firm to earn profits, but also to ensure it an advantage over rival companies. Essential, therefore, is the correctness of the taken decisions and the choice of a suitable strategy. The participating teams have to conduct thorough analyses based on facts, to properly analyse micro- and macroeconomic factors and to draw correct conclusions which make it possible to take strategic decisions concerning investments in the next twelve months and in the consecutive years of the firm’s virtual operation,” said Arkadiusz Wojtas, Key Account & Tender Manager at Schenker Sp. z o.o. and one of the members of the LOGICART team.
Also important are determination and the ability to answer many questions relating to various spheres of the firm’s operation. ”In Global Open Tournament organised by Business Game Factory we had to take a look at the firm as a whole and to consider many aspects of its management. We had to decide how much money we would like to invest and for what purposes, how many products we would like to sell and where we should get them – from our own factories or from other manufacturers? We had to define the capacity to be achieved by our factories and to decide how many and what workers would be needed, how much money ought to be invested in their training and how much in the promotion of the firm’s trademark and products, and in marketing in order to ensure the highest profit achievable with the proposed level of prices. We also had to make predictions concerning the activities of rival companies,” noted Mariusz Kozłowski, Development Project Manager at Schenker Sp. z o.o.
The road to victory
Some 400 teams from various parts of the world participated in the game. The initial situation of all teams, which were divided into groups, was identical: they were given the task of managing similar firms active in the same sectors of the economy. At this stage of the game our colleagues from Schenker Sp. z o.o. competed in the sector of telecommunications and had to manage a company manufacturing and selling telecommunications equipment, infrastructure and services. The teams from each group competed in four rounds. Every round represented a year of a firm’s activity. The winners from each group – 38 teams in all, met in the semi-final round. Next, the best six teams, including the Polish team from Schenker Sp. z o.o., qualified to the final round of the tournament. The team representing DB Schenker competed in the final round against teams which represented the following firms: SKF Austria, Ericsson from Sweden, Accenture from Spain, Nordea from Latvia and Nokia from Hungary.
The verdict proved favourable for the Polish team representing DB Schenker. It proved to be the best and won the 10th edition of the Global Open Tournament programme!
”The final round was not easy for the players due chiefly to the time limit. The competing teams had to swiftly analyse the market situation and to take decisions relating to many aspects of the firms’ operation, including the price, manufacturing, employment, investment and financial policy. In the final round we were given an hour and a half to analyse the market situation and to take some 100 decisions concerning all spheres of the firm’s operation. Victory in this global tournament depended on the correctness of the formulated decisions,” said Rafał Tarasewicz, Project Manager at Schenker Sp. z o.o.
Recipe for success
According to Dariusz Subda, Financial Controlling Manager at Schenker Sp. z o.o. and leader of the LOGICART team, several factors have contributed to its success:
”The fact that the team’s members represented different areas of business activity and could jointly draw on a wide range of experience and knowledge relating to various aspects of that activity – from financial matters, through sales and logistics to project management, was certainly an advantage. Apart from that we did our best to draw conclusions from any mistakes made in every round of the tournament and to continually make improvements in all these spheres that were crucial for the success of our virtual firm. We adopted a flexible approach and chose to swiftly react to the changing market situation, which proved fruitful.”
Rafał Tarasewicz, too, stressed the importance of the fact that the team’s members represented different areas of business activity “because this diversity and the abundance of concepts made it possible to form a group able to compete for the title of the tournament’s Winner!”
All members of the victorious team also stressed the importance of meticulous preparations for every round of the game. However, in their opinion the key to success was properly motivated team-work. “We proved able to act in concert. For although our opinions on many matters differed, we managed to draw conclusions from our earlier decisions and steps taken by rivals, and to give up individual ambitions and preferences. Thanks to this we have scored a success. It is evident that this was a correct strategy,” Mariusz Kozłowski noted.
“Our aim was to win. In order to win we had to play as a team. I think that our success can be described as the resultant of different (often divergent) opinions concerning the adoption of various decisions, for instance, financial ones,” added Piotr Bąbel, Sales Manager in Kielce Branch at Schenker Sp. z o.o.
Benefits of participation in the Tournament
In the opinion of the Tournament’s winners the most important benefit of participation in the programme is the opportunity to enlarge one’s business knowledge, to look in a comprehensive way at an enterprise and processes, to grasp the relation between decisions pertaining to various aspects of a firm’s operation and its performance. Apart from that, participation in the game leads to the exchange of knowledge and experience between the players and increases the analytical and strategic abilities of individual team members and the team as a whole. Experience gained through the game will be used during the implementation of other projects in our firm.
The members of the LOGICART team also stress that the game was not only an opportunity to learn, but also an amusement and a challenge. It was an amusement because it provided an occasion for interesting discussions and closer contacts between persons forming the team. And it was a challenge because of strong competition and demanding tasks.
We wish the winners further successes and new interesting challenges and unforgettable moments in Cannes! And above all we congratulate them on their victory!
Schenker Sp. z o.o.