11 university students, most of them without work experience was thrown in to Grab@pizza and tormented by the CEO – and they did a great job!

There was an almost immediate business focus and they were really competitive in making the new business projects work – so much that the legacy and infrastructure changes got postponed and caused problems later in the simulation!

Month 7 was chaos – as usual when everybody is learning their new roles and the game:

  • Everybody is just running around talking to everybody
  • No clear paths of communication
  • Business focus great, but unorganized
  • We had no idea what to do first

The team went on and made improvements, IT stopped running around the business, Service manager started to understand ITSM, BRM took the dialog with the business. The team improved but the business focus was unfortunately a little too high, some capacity RFC’s was not prioritized and we will suffer a lot of issues in month 9. Super bowl is now on the table and focus is on enabling this – long term strategy has started to evolve

After month 8 the team decided to really help Change with priorities to make all RFC correct prioritized. The team fires up a meeting strategy and starts to have regular meetings every mont. BRM meets with the business, BRM meets with IT. BRM is connecting IT and business units and they are all aware of bottlenecks and constraints that prevents our long term goals

In month 9 and 10 the team improves a lot of small things, the reporting works, Strategy is long term and all activities are planned and discussed, Super Bowl is focus. Grab@pizza CEO is very pleased with effort, energy and imrpovements – even if profit is not really at the point it should be the CEO is pleased with the team! Great job.

Time prevents us from going all the way to month 12 but the CEO is convinced we would have reached all our goals, even if we had to live with some capacity issues due to some missed upgrades in the mid-year months.

The teams key learning points:

  • Communicating through the right channels/roles are important
  • Plan for the unplanned
  • Work together as a team
  • Understand priorities (business value)
  • Knowing who does what is key
  • Understanding organisation and roles important
  • A common goal is important
  • Anything can happen
  • Be open to re-prioritize when new things enter the chain
  • Documentation important so we don’t miss things (changes…)
  • Structure and order is important to get a grip of the budget and get it right (predictable)
  • Clear paths for decisions and governance

These where the key learning points for the students, they are soon entering the market to find jobs and the Grab@pizza session has made them aware of the reality that awaits them out there. They are also aware of what is important – business value  – and they know they need to contribute to and enable that value. Old school techies will have old school jobs, New world techies will have new world jobs! New competencies and capabilities are needed in the future (…now!!)

So there is hope for the future, IT techies with business focus are entering the scene!

I wish them all good luck at their coming jobs and I know they will have a business and value focus, they will be a great contribution to their former employer.

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Leif Andersson

Leif has worked as a manager and leader in IT organisation for almost 30 years now, and for the last 15 years with management consulting, governance, strategy, support training, business relations and leadership coaching. Leif is owner and consultant at Illumineight AB in Sweden, delivering training and consulting in ITIL, USM, BRM, leadership and organizational change. He is an approved instructor for business simulations from Gamingworks since 2008. (Apollo 13, The Phoenix Project, Marslander (including online version) and Grab@pizza) He was also an early adopter of the Gamingworks concept ‘ABC of ICT’ and have translated the ABC of ICT deck of cards to Swedish and promoted it in Sweden. Leif is also an ambassador for BRM institute and promotes BRM in Sweden and the Nordics. He is a lecturer at University of Borås and participates as an ITSM specialist in several projects at the University of Borås.