The Great Game of Business 800.386.2752

The Great Game of Business Blog

Sign up to receive our blog posts conveniently in your email box

Don't Worry About the Big Issues, Just Do Your Job

May 1, 2019 by Jack Stack 0 Comments
Excerpted from The Great Game of Business. Like most American companies, International Harvester operated on the principle that everybody should focus on doing the specific job he or she was assigned. The corollary was that you should only give people the information required to do their specific jobs; everything else should be treated as some kind of corporate secret. Somehow it had become common wisdom that this was a good way to run a business—in fact, the only right way to run a business. That is the biggest myth of all.
Read More

Ask the Coaches: Getting Started with the Great Game™

Apr 29, 2019 by Lauren Haley 0 Comments
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."
Read More

Capitalizing on GGOB to Attract Employees & Customers

Apr 26, 2019 by Lauren Haley 0 Comments
Company culture is one of the most important values individuals look at when searching for a job. That's why Great Game practitioners often spread the word about their open-book and transparent business practices, and as a result not only draw in prospective talent, but attract the right employees with compatible values—those that will thrive in their Great Game culture. GGOB practitioners showcase their unique culture to tell their customers and staff—new and old—the story of what they're all about. Many companies capitalize on their practice of the Great Game of Business® in job postings and their organization's web pages as hiring tool, an asset to retain current employees, and way to communicate their organization's values to clients. 
Read More

It's a Big Mistake to Promote People Too Quickly

Apr 24, 2019 by Jack Stack 0 Comments
Excerpted from The Great Game of Business. The common wisdom is that people should prove themselves before they get promoted. I always promoted people as fast as I could. Sometimes I promoted them right out of my department. I liked giving people opportunities, and I didn't want them to get bored and stale, but I had an ulterior motive as well: it made my job a lot easier to have friends all over the company.
Read More

A Manager's Job Is to Come Up with Answers

Apr 17, 2019 by Jack Stack 0 Comments
Excerpted from The Great Game of Business. It's very common for managers, especially new managers, to think they're supposed to have solutions for any problems that arise on their watch. That kind of thinking can get you into deep trouble. For one thing, it sets you up to fail because no one has all the answers. For another, it undermines your credibility because everyone knows that no one has all the answers. It also isolates you from people. A big pitfall of managers at all levels is the notion they have to be perfect. I know supervisors who can't hold a meeting because they're afraid someone might ask a question they can't answer. As I mentioned earlier, I know CEOs who can't leave their offices unless their ties are straight and every hair is in place. Managers like that wind up hating their jobs. They feel they have to live up to an image, to be an idol, to be a representative of a position.
Read More

What's the Great Game All About Anyway?

Apr 15, 2019 by Lauren Haley 0 Comments
The Great Game of Business® is not for everyone. It's for business leaders looking for true transformation—those who fantasize about a business life in which others share the burdens often reserved for owners and executive staff. It's for those who view prosperity as a journey, not just an outcome. It's for leaders prepared to learn, teach, and share in The Game. 
Read More

Nice Guys Finish Last

Apr 10, 2019 by Jack Stack 0 Comments
Excerpted from The Great Game of Business. We've all heard how you have to be an S.O.B. to succeed in business. How you have to step on other people to get results. How it's okay to throw your weight around because it's a tough world and you win through intimidation. It's all a crock. I've worked on the shop floor. Believe me, nobody there wants to hear a guy telling you to bust your butt if he's rolling around in a Mercedes and beating up the people he works with. When you flaunt what you've got, when you intimidate, when you treat people badly, you lose power. I've watched guys like that throughout my life. I've learned it's just a matter of time before they get theirs.
Read More

Reaching the Front-Line: Turning a Part-Time Job into a Career

Apr 8, 2019 by Cassie Potts 0 Comments
Vontae Douglas' journey at Tasty Catering began with working part-time at small summer events. A combination of business education, financial literacy training, and coworkers close enough to be considered family have transformed Vontae's summer job into a career in a field that he never expected. Financial literacy training and working with the numbers behind the business was new for Vontae, but this business training and education opened doors to a completely new work experience. He and his team have been taught to understand what the financial numbers mean, how to read them, and how to individually respond to impact future results and the success of the company. 
Read More

Don't Tell People the Truth—They'll Screw You

Mar 30, 2019 by Jack Stack 0 Comments
Excerpted from The Great Game of Business. You may wonder if it's possible to play the Great Game of Business anywhere-in a division of a giant conglomerate, say, or in a factory with a dominant union, or in a company that doesn't share equity with employees or have an intelligent bonus system. In fact, The Game started in a place exactly like that, in a very small department at the huge International Harvester plant in Melrose Park, Illinois. It was there that I learned most of what I know about managing, and everything I've tried to forget about leadership.
Read More

Transparency Reaching New Heights in Government

Mar 29, 2019 by Lauren Haley 0 Comments
If any industry would have difficulty with transparency, one might argue that it would be government entities, but that has not stopped Greene County, Missouri from opening the books. Greene County began playing their version of GGOB— The Great Game of Government— in 2012 by modifying Great Game practices to fit the needs of a government organization. Their efforts and financial results earned them the All-Star Pioneer Award in 2015, which honors an organization that is the first in their field to implement and practice the methodology of The Great Game of Business. After years of progress in opening the books and improving upon Great Game practices, the officials at Greene County challenged themselves to take transparency to the next level. 
Read More

Kick-Starting your Game: Your Questions Answered

Mar 25, 2019 by Lauren Haley 0 Comments
You asked and we've answered! In this blog series, our experienced Great Game coaches answer questions directly from the open-book community. What is the best coaching tip you have for companies just starting to practice the Great Game of Business? Be sure the CEO is fully bought in, directly involved, is a main cheerleader, sets the example, and ensures that all involved (especially 100% of the leadership team) are enrolled and on board. Period!  Create a solid communication and business literacy training process via a weekly Huddle rhythm.
Read More

The Roots of Open-Book Management with Jack Stack and Jim Canfield

Mar 15, 2019 by Lauren Haley 1 Comment
Let's take it back a few years....14 years before the famous story of SRC's establishment in 1983. Jack Stack is learning the ins-and-outs of manufacturing, the detailed metrics involved in the industry, and receiving training and education provided by his company, International Harvester. But what he doesn't realize is that he's being cheated out of some of the most important metrics in any company: the financials and reporting system. In 1983, everyone is struggling for business, but this company is on the verge of failure. International Harvester owes $6 billion, interest rates are at 20%, and the company lays off  1000 workers weekly for two years straight. Jack and the other managers of the Springfield plant are fully focused on saving the jobs of their 119 employees and keeping the business from shutting down. This critical position allows Jack to take on the company financials himself and understand what it takes to make a great company: 
Read More

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.