Finance training can be fun and effective

Alan Cowey (Director of Strategic Direction Performance Management Ltd. E‐ URL:

Industrial and Commercial Training

ISSN: 0019-7858

Publication date: 1 December 2005



This paper's purpose is to address the fact that many intelligent and experienced managers in industry do not really understand about business finance, how profits are generated and what they can do to improve them. This paper shows how the traditional perception problems of dryness, difficulty and irrelevance of finance training can be overcome. Furthermore the paper covers how managers can create action plans within their own areas of interest to have an impact on the company performance.


This paper describes how physical, board‐based simulations can be used to give a learning experience of finance and business in an effective and time efficient way. The paper lists the problems of finance training, explains the means by which a good simulation overcomes these problems, and shows how small performance differences can make a.significant impact.


The post‐training research shows that participants find the experience of finance in a simulation to be very effective in the use of their time, compared to other methods of training. The feedback is also that their knowledge has substantially improved on the key business issues of finance reports, making choices about the use of resources and the need to work together with others to achieve results.


The paper contains important messages for Learning and Development departments about the methods of finance training and also to operations directors about the ways managers can create action plans to improve the results through a deeper understanding of business.



Cowey, A. (2005), "Finance training can be fun and effective", Industrial and Commercial Training, Vol. 37 No. 7, pp. 355-360.

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2005, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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