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Ask the Coaches: Getting Started with the Great Game™

Apr 29, 2019 by Lauren Haley 0 Comments

Getting Started with the Great Game

From characteristics of successful GGOB practitioners, to forecasting tips, to biggest mistakes and how to avoid them, our Great Game™ coaches tackle these common issues in this segment of "Ask the Coaches."

What is the biggest mistake companies make when practicing GGOB? What are your recommendations for avoiding this mistake?

They don't take the time or have the patience to continually educate and work on The Game. The education needs to be constant and repetitive.

Not sticking with it and holding those in leadership accountable for good Game-play. Without disciplined structure found in GGOB's practices, you won't see maximum results.

Leadership doesn't let the people run The Game, but control it themselves. Remember, people support what they help create and need to be involved in the creation of The Game, MiniGames™, annual plan, etc.

It's not just sharing numbers and creating a successful bonus plan. If you're not doing a GGOB-style weekly forecasting Huddle and taking it seriously, that's a big mistake.

Focusing on the negative. Instead, look at small progress or milestones and highlight those in Huddles or by recognizing employees for their work individually.


What techniques can we use to improve our forecasting process? If we are consistently off, what should we do?

  • Practice makes perfect, or at least leads to improvement! If you aren't seeing the progress your team is looking for, try analyzing where and why the discrepancies are arising. Consider looking into these topics:
    • Are your people understanding the numbers? (Do they need additional financial literacy training?)
    • Are they missing historical/background data or trends?
    • Could they be misreading the historical data or missing the trends?
    • Be sure staff is not simply tossing out the numbers or assuming management isn’t listening to their report. Follow up and ask questions to get the story behind the numbers. 
  • Start forecasting initially in a group setting, so that people can learn from others as they go. Keep the meetings tightly focused on the key numbers
  • Forecasting meetings should be highly disciplined. They should be at a specific, dedicated time each week. Once your staff gets the hang of it, the numbers will begin moving the way you want them to. Financial forecasting is one of the most powerful management processes I’ve ever seen. (Learn about how forecasting fits into the Huddle Cycle here.)


What are some characteristics and attributes of successful GGOB companies?

  • Telling the truth—an honest and authentic approach from all employees, especially leadership. 
  • Open and generous workplace leaders that are willing to champion the Great Game process and the financial and cultural changes it will bring. Change begins at the top, and the most successful implementation in any company requires the right leaders. 
  • Relentless belief in the open-book and GGOB concepts—transitioning to this management style is not necessarily easy, but dedication to the methodology yields amazing (and lasting) results.
  • GGOB is not a good fit for those just going through the motions or being "yes people." Organizations with the best results are forward thinking, care about their people and culture, and have an active management team.

Need help moving forward with the Great Game? Check out these resources:


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What questions do you have? Email with your questions about the Great Game and opening the books. 

You asked and we've answered! In this blog series, our experienced Great Game coaches answer questions directly from the open-book community. These answers were compiled from members of the GGOB coaching network and open-book community: Jack O'Riley, Kevin Walter, Ron Penney, Bill Collier, & Chris McKittrick


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Topics: Great Game Coaching, Leadership, Open-Book Management

Written by Lauren Haley
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About The Great Game of Business®

Our approach to running a company was developed to help close one of the biggest gaps in business: the gap between managers and employees. We call our open-book approach The Great Game of Business. What lies at the heart of The Game is a very simple proposition: The best, most efficient, most profitable way to operate a business is to give everybody in the company a voice in saying how the company is run and a stake in the outcome. Let us teach you how to develop a culture of ownership, where employees think, act and feel like owners.