For the sake of real progress and business continuity, discovering the developmental needs of a workforce is essential. Fortunately for leaders, business simulations can be structured as part of workplace training to clearly outline what employees need in order to improve in the future, as well as improving general team development skills.

When it comes to constructing an effective and engaging workplace training programme, business leaders are more likely to see results if the theme of the programme is centred around current skills gaps and shortfalls at the company. To discover these shortfalls easily, allowing employees to work collectively and assess their performance is key.

So how can leaders utilise business simulations as part of workplace training? And how will they help to improve overall operations?

How are business simulations used as part of workplace training?

A business simulation gives employees the opportunity to practice their skills in an environment mirrored to the environment they will experience in the real world. Drawing on experiential learning methods, an effective simulation will encourage employees to work collectively to solve problems and later assess how they performed and how they could improve in a real situation.

The benefit of implementing business simulations into workplace training is that individuals can work together to improve team development skills, as well as increasing learning retention. Compared to typical learning methods, the retention rate of experiential methods can be as much as 90 percent, compared to 10 percent for traditional training programmes.

Using business simulations to identify developmental needs at your business

When constructing a simulation, preparation is key. If the simulation does not allow employees to develop their skills in areas directly related to the business, the entire event can prove to be a waste of time and money for leaders. Before allowing employees to immerse themselves into a simulation, care must be taken to ensure that it is relevant and engaging in line with the company goals.

After creating a simulation that will work to develop the skills of employees, giving them the responsibility to make decisions and voice their opinions on workplace matters will give leaders a clear indication of where employees themselves feel that they could improve. Creating an open form of communication between employees and leaders when actively engaging in a business simulation is extremely advantageous in discovering where employees feel that they could improve.

After a business simulation event has concluded, assessing how well employees performed is the clearest way to identify the needs of employees going forward. If a common trend begins to appear of employees lacking or underperforming in a certain area, it is more than likely that this area of the business needs more attention when developing the skills of employees in the future. Similarly, if employees generally perform particularly well in a certain area, business leaders can rest assured that their employees will be able to perform well in these areas and thus focus less on this area in future training programmes.

Pinpointing precisely what employees need in their roles in order to develop can be discovered more effectively by allowing employees to work on team development skills and communicate their feelings in a clear and impactful way. When structured carefully and correctly, a business simulation acts as the perfect way to achieve this.