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This course consists of limited materials from our comprehensive Business Modeling course

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Dynamic Business Modeling - Getting started

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Small Sysdea model for customer growth

This short course will get you started on building dynamic business models - a fast, effective and reliable way to model time-based business challenges and plans.

The full business modeling course is quite extensive, so comes in two parts - core frameworks and extensions. This getting-started course offers a selection of clips from core classes. This enables you to get a preliminary understanding of the material and style of teaching before committing to a full course.

To make it as easy as possible to learn the modeling principles and method, the classes mostly follow a simple, familiar example - you will go through the whole process of modeling a start-up plan for a new restaurant. Modeling can of course be done for issues and plans concerning much larger and more complex cases, and classes include references to some examples.

Visit the Sysdea site, opens in new window The software used for this course is Sysdea - a user friendly online planning software. The free 30-day trial for the software is enough time to complete this course.

Small Sysdea model for customer growth

Topics covered in this course

  • Introduction … How this course works, and how it relates to the full courses
  • Class 1: Performance over time … Short clips and demonstrations about specifying performance aims in a model, and modeling causal relationships.
  • Class 2: Stocks, Decisions, External factors and performance … Short segments on modeling how customers and staff drive sales, revenue, costs and profits for a simple case - also explains about non-financial performance aims, and using "lookup" relationships when a math approach is difficult.
  • Class 3: Stocks accumulate and deplete … Short segments show how to model the winning and losing of customers, and how to capture constraints caused by limited potential customers.
  • Class 4: Interdependence, feedback and the core system … Demonstrates for a simple case how to model interdependence between business factors, how to test the resulting feedback, and how this leads to a standard 'architecture' for many business systems.
  • Wrap-up What to do next, plus pointers to some further resources.

The learning approach

  • watch an online video explaining the principles of each step
  • check out the course software videos for simple tasks you will need to do
  • copy the demonstrations in the videos to build your own model
  • check your model against our versions
  • optionally, investigate other examples

Model-building demonstrations for the Extensions topics are beyond the scope of this getting-started course, but the class pages offer explanatory notes and videos on what exactly those topics are, and access to some working models. Topics are as follows:

  • Introduction … Explains how these extensions make a business model more powerful, but also how they can be useful models on their own.
  • Class 5: Stock attributes and co-flows … How important 'qualities' of customers, staff and other Stocks change over time, and affect performance, such as customer purchase-rates, staff experience, and product appeal.
  • Class 6: Stock-development, pipelines and aging-chains … How customers, staff and other Stocks move between several stages of development.
  • Class 7: Modeling competition … Three standard competition structures that work together in different ways for growing and mature markets, and for markets where customers are not exclusively with one supplier.
  • Class 8: Modeling policies to automate decisions … structures that capture a "rule" that works out quantified decisions by comparing actual performance against targets and aiming to close the gap.
  • Class 9: Adding intangible factors … How three categories of intangible factors work and influence the wider system - the state-of-mind of customers, staff and others, information-based items, and certain quality-related factors.
  • Class 10: Capabilities and processes … combining staff, skills, information and processes to enable the business to do critical activities effectively and efficiently.

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