Game-based learning for Business --
Our research programme and teaching at the Universities of Hertfordshire and Cambridge have focused on 2 key questions:
WHAT makes a person successful in business i.e. what is business acumen?
HOW can this success be developed most effectively and efficiently?
- Publication Date
- Barry Hedley
- Chairman --
After an early business career which included being one of the team that established The Boston Consulting Group’s first office in London in the 1970s, Barry was formerly European founder and Global Chairman of Braxton Associates, an international strategy and financial consulting firm which later became the strategy practice of Deloitte Consulting. Under his leadership Braxton grew to around 1000 people worldwide. At Deloitte, Barry was also a member of the Global Management Committee directing its $4 billion consulting business.
Barry’s professional concentration in recent years has been on linking strategy formulation and execution processes to shareholder value, and this has led him to his current role at Dialectyx. He is also an extensively diversified angel investor and has been active in Private Equity for thirty years.
He maintains an active academic role at the Judge Business School, Cambridge University, where he is a Senior Associate and teaches Advanced Business and Corporate Strategy and Financial Management. He is also an Emeritus Fellow at Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge, where he was formerly Senior Bursar and Director of Management Studies.He has an MBA degree with High Distinction from Harvard Business School, where he was a Baker Scholar and Harkness Fellow, and First Class Honours degrees in both Mechanical and Chemical Engineering from Cambridge University. He is a Chartered Engineer and Member of the Institution of Engineering & Technology and a Fellow of the Royal Society for Arts (RSA)
- Stephen Arnold
- Managing Director --
Stephen graduated with honours in BSc in Business Management and with distinction in MSc in Digital Systems.He founded Softa in 1986, building the company into one of the top consultancies in the UK specialising in the integration of strategy, planning and reporting processes. Softa developed an innovative methodology -- LivingStrategy -- supported by its Sextant software. Stephen also lectured at leading business schools.
Softa sold its intellectual property to Deloitte Consulting in 1998 and Stephen became a global partner with responsibility for Strategic Enterprise Management and Financial and Performance Management. He continued to work with leading business schools and software vendors in this space.
Stephen and his team acquired the intellectual property from Deloitte to re-establish the Softa organisation in late 2002. During 2003, Softa worked closely with Cognos in the field of Corporate Performance Management which led to the purchase of Softa by Cognos in 2004.As well as being the Managing Director of Dialectyx, Stephen is also the Entrepreneur in Residence and Head of the experiential learning and skills development research programme at the University of Hertfordshire.
- Peter McInerney
- Commercial Legal Counsel --
Chambers Guide to the UK Legal Profession has described Peter as a "fantastic lawyer", and "an excellent sounding board for strategic advice". Head of the film tv and sports practices at Sheridans, we are delighted that he brings his unusual combination of skills to bear on our behalf at Dialectyx.
Peter has particular expertise in structuring international co-productions and the licensing of formats and sports rights. He also advises clients on effective rights management, rights audits and the clearance and exploitation of archives.
- Surosh Pillay
- Operations Director --
Surosh holds a First Class Honours Bachelor of Engineering degree in Digital Communication and Electronics and recently completed a British Telecom (BT) sponsored PhD in Voice Biometrics at the University of Hertfordshire. His research interests include biometrics, pattern matching algorithms and the convergence of state-of-the-art technologies for commercial and educational purposes. Surosh was formerly employed as a Visiting lecturer and the Lead Consultant where he managed and delivered internal and external Market Research and business consultancy projects for the university. He later joined Dialectyx Solutions when the company was still its infancy, to head up the software development team.
As Operations Director at Dialectyx and post-doctoral research fellow at the University of Hertfordshire, Surosh currently plays a key role in the day-to-day running of the business and is primarily in charge of research & product development, client services and implementation as well as sales and marketing in the Higher Education sector.Surosh was formerly employed at the Graduate Consulting Unit as the Lead Researcher where he gained invaluable experience in Market Research, business consultancy and project management.
- Jack Waller
- Product Manager --
Jack holds a Bachelor honours degree in 3D Digital Animation. Jack joined Dialectyx Solutions when the company was still its infancy, as a games and animation development intern. Jack secured a full time position as a 3D animator, working on product development and marketing for Dialectyx.
As Product manager, Jack is currently in charge of product development for Dialectyx and is involved in client services as well as sales and marketing.
- Kate Temple-Brown
- Commercial Director --
Kate is in the unusual position of having experience working both in house and at a recruitment consultancy advising those with whom she used to work side by side. She is a graduate recruitment and development professional with 13 years experience, primarily in financial services firms. She worked for 12 years in-house before heading up the graduate and early careers team at a boutique recruitment consultancy that works across all sectors. Understanding the strategy and facilitation of end to end recruitment as well as managing cross-regional and multi-divisional team members and stakeholders.
Kate has worked with large 50,000-person global multi-divisional investment banks , exciting 8-person start ups and everything in-between. Her focus is always to get the best candidates in front of her clients. Kate’s time and variant experiences in the entry level talent market gives her exceptional insight and competitor knowledge that she loves to share with her clients.
- Andrew Backhouse
- Finance Director --
Education: 1982, BSc Hons in Managerial and Administrative Studies, University of Aston in Birmingham; 1985, qualified as a chartered accountant with Arthur Andersen & Co.Employment: 1981-86, Manager in corporate services group at Arthur Andersen & Co; 1986-1996, Group Financial Controller and Company Secretary, Softa Group (now a part of Deloitte & Touche Consulting) -- a specialist Strategy and Sales and Marketing Systems Consultancy; Current position since 1996.
- Rajiv Nadkarni
- Technical Director and Software Development Partner --
Rajiv has over 23 years experience in Software Development Services, primarily in Offshore Outsourcing. Rajiv has worked in India, USA & EMEA, and is now leading Microsap, delivering software services from its offshore centres, with Dialectyx as a major partner.
Rajiv has set up large-scale offshore relationships, managed accounts with team sizes of more than 100 people and managed the complete delivery of large projects with teams of 50 people.
He started his career as a Software Consultant with Tata, and from 1985 through 1997, Rajiv worked for Blue Star Limited, becoming Group Project Manager responsible for complete delivery management for multinationals such as 3M, HP and Boots. He then joined Mastech Systems, a US based global software consulting company, and was their Head of Technical Resourcing for Europe.
Rajiv is an Electrical Engineer with Post Graduate qualifications in Software Technology from the National Centre for Software Technology, a Government of India initiative.
- Ben Caverley
- Company Secretary --
Ben has spent over 20 years combining business consultancy with software specification and development.
Ben graduated from the University of Aston in Birmingham in 1983 in Business Administration and French. Having spent 3 years in industry, Ben joined Softa, specialising in the integration of strategy, sales and marketing planning and reporting processes, playing a key role in the development of the firm’s innovative methodology, LivingStrategy as well as being a leading member of the team which specified and designed Softa’s main software product, Sextant.
Ben moved to Deloitte in 1998 when it acquired Softa’s IPR and was a manager in the Strategic Enterprise Management team working with large corporates and software vendors (predominantly SAP, Oracle and Hyperion) helping to apply technology to the strategy and planning processes.
Softa was subsequently bought by Cognos, the leading CPM and BI vendor, where Ben worked for 2 years in Corporate Performance Management, supporting both consultancy partners and clients.
- University of Hertfordshire
- University of Cambridge
To provide enjoyable & real life learning experiences which make a measurable difference to people's life and careers.
- Business Acumen
- The WHAT --
Business acumen turns out to be a combination of skills and knowledge.
- Our research shows that there are '9 skills for Success'
The most important of these are Decision Judgement and Business Astuteness
- Decision Judgement
- Business Astuteness
- Self Awareness
- Problem Solving
- Team Play
- Technology Appreciation
- Self Management
- Although business can seem complex, in fact there are only 3 fundamental factors of business success. Superior understanding of these factors (with practice!) leads to superior decision judgement and superior performance: Markets, Competitors, Risk
- Learning Theory
- The HOW --
Learning theory informs us that:
- Experiential Learning
- The more we practice and gain real world experiences (with feedback) the faster and more effectively we learn. This is what we call Experiential Learning.
- Experts develop expert scripts from experience, whereby they distill apparent complexity to the essence of what is really important. It is this 'expert script' which drives superior decision judgement and superior business acumen. This is why we have developed the 'FAST STRATEGY' expert script.
- Learning is improved when we are relaxed and having fun. This is why we have created a game format to our learning solutions.
To develop Business Acumen or commerciality
2: Skills & Knowledge
Our research identified that the most effective way to develop Business Acumen or commerciality is through experiential learning or learn by doing. More importantly, perhaps, we have also revealed that development can be drastically accelerated if gamification features are added to the process.
This has enabled us to design and develop a revolutionary set of activities, programmes and profiles which have been proven to fast-track the development of commerciality (Real Learning), almost without realising (Real Fun)
Objective 1: Teams
Are you looking for a team building activity that is highly interactive, educational and fun? If so, this is just for you.
Beat The Dragons™ is an exciting Business and Entrepreneurial skills development activity that puts you in the role of a Dragon giving participants the chance to analyse and invest in real world business case studies from BBCs Dragons' Den.
Objective 2: Skills & Knowledge
Measure and benchmark participants skills and knowledge.
The data collected from our unique programmes and activities enable us to create both snapshot and comprehensive profiles which measure and benchmark participants skills and knowledge. This can be used for assessment, personal development and reflection.