The turnaround story of Springfield Remanufacturing Company (SRC) that began back in 1983 has become an inspiration to thousands of businesses around the world. The key was using the analogy of a game – with rules, a scorecard, and rewards for winning – to help explain to every individual in the company how they could literally impact the bottom line. That premise became the foundation for a management system that’s now known as The Great Game of Business (GGOB) that, at its heart, is all about financial sustainability.
And while for-profit businesses of every size, shape and sector have embraced that powerful message over the past 25 years, the lessons learned at SRC have now spread into the not-for-profit and public sectors as well. In recent months, leading organizations such as Missouri Southern State University (MSSU), Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ozarks (BBBSO) and Greene Country, Missouri have all committed to embrace the open-book management lifestyle taught by the GGOB as a way to improve their own financial sustainability by empowering their members and associates to step up and make a difference.
For example, a “design team” committee – made up of faculty and staff members – is currently working to tailor the program to fit Missouri Southern. Dr. Alan Marble, the university’s president, expressed enthusiasm for how embracing the lessons of the GGOB will give all of the university’s faculty and staff members a role in helping to solidify the university’s financial future. “Everyone will have a voice and a vested interest in our future,” he said.
Rich Armstrong, president of Great Game of Business, said that he is impressed with Missouri Southern’s commitment to embracing open-book management. “Both the higher-education and open-book communities will be watching and learning from MSSU’s experience,” he said.
Similarly, there is ample enthusiasm for the BBBSO’s move in 2015 to implement the GGOB as a way to maximize the use of community resources toward making stronger mentoring programs for local children. BBBSO CEO Katie Davis said that while SRC and the GGOB have long been generous contributors in terms of financial contributions and volunteer hours to her organization, she is excited to use their lessons about open-book management as a way to help even more children in the community. “We have been fortunate to receive so much support from SRC in the past and implementing the GGOB in our organization will have a long-lasting impact on the organization,” she said.
Davis is also excited about serving as a role model for other nonprofit organizations out there that could also benefit from the power of open-book management and the GGOB. “The GGOB is not just for private companies,” she said, “any nonprofit can also use it to increase financial stability and enhance their services to the community.”