Albert Einstein once remarked, “The only source of knowledge is experience.”  And, when it comes to developing executives, STRATX’s simulations are the most effective way of providing real-world business experiences to corporate leaders, marketing executives and company employees. I know this firsthand. 

My introduction to STRATX’s Markstrat simulation occurred while I was studying strategic marketing at the Darden Graduate Business School (University of Virginia).  Our capstone project was a Markstrat competition among five student-led teams/companies whose products competed against one another. The company who earned the most profits at the end of the exercise would be declared the winner. 

The simulations ran over four days, with each 24-hour period representing a fiscal year. Not surprisingly, the winning team dominated the competition because it made sure their products and company were customer-centric. 

The number two team was a distant second, and the other three teams (including mine) were struggling to survive. Those of us with floundering companies knew  we should be focused on customers, but the Markstrat simulation was so real we found it easy to avoid the rule of “consumer primacy.” 

". . .my Markstrat experience . . . went beyond  giving me knowledge

and, instead, changed my attitudes and taught me how to think."

What was interesting is that the program cohort was comprised entirely of students who, like myself, functioned at the Director level or above – many for Fortune 100 companies.  At least we made our mistakes in a risk-free environment without losing real money. Or our jobs.

As STRATX’s founder Jean-Claude Larreche, Ph.D., has remarked, “marketing is a concept, not a product.” This explains why my Markstrat experience was so rich: it went beyond giving me knowledge and, instead, changed my attitudes and taught me how to think. Most importantly, it has optimized my job performance for the past 20 years.

Sure, I’ve learned a lot working for my employers and consulting with 75+ corporate and not-for-profit clients. But my involvement with Markstrat gave me 10 years of experience in just four days. And it can do the same for anyone, whether the simulation occurs over a few hours, for one or more days, or on-line or in person. 

Today there are more than 15 STRATX real-world simulations each designed around specific training goals and objectives. Several are based on evergreen issues, others are industry-specific, while some are customized for discrete customers. In every case a STRATX simulation improved the organization's  trajectory faster and less expensively than any other means available. 

At least that has been my experience.


Bill Ballas


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