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the GulfCom simulation


A Multimedia Organisational Change Simulation


GulfCom: The GulfCom Simulation brings to life a realistic scenario in which players explore the difficulties in adopting a change or innovation in an organisation, and includes lessons on how to overcome different forms of individual and organisational resistance to change.  The context is that of the Middle East, and your game mission is to implement the new Performance Management System (PMS) in a somewhat recalcitrant subsidiary of your group, named the “GulfCom.”  In sum, you will have up to 6 months of (simulated) time to convince as many as possible of the 22 members of GulfCom’s top management team to adopt this change.

Areas: Change Management, Organisational Behavior, Technology and Innovation Management & Marketing, Cross Cultural Management   

Authors: Albert A. Angehrn, Professor of Information Technology and Director of INSEAD's Centre for Advanced Learning Technologies (CALT), and Florian Schloderer, Lecturer.  

Minimum time required: 1/2 day (ideally: 1 day) 

Languages: English

Distribution Contact: [email protected] 
For more information click here


The GulfCom Simulation provides an effective and unique learning experience on leading change projects in organisations located in the Middle East. 

Based on the principles and dynamics of the EIS Simulation, the GulfCom Simulation now stands alongside the LingHe Simulation that previously adapted the EIS Simulation to the environment of China.

Game Scenario

In the GulfCom simulation players will be challenged to introduce an innovation in a subsidiary of Al Saqr Investments, named:  “GulfCom.” 

Players are debriefed as follows:  a new Performance Management System (PMS) has been set up within the Al Saqr group to increase consistency, transparency and performance, and it has already been fully deployed in all of the other subsidiaries of Al Saqr — with the sole exception now being GulfCom. 

The game mission is handed down to players by the headquarters of Al Saqr, and consists in persuading the top management team of GulfCom to adopt the new PMS. 

The time frame is a maximum of 6 months (i.e., of simulated time).

As displayed in the GulfCom User Manual screen shots of the simulation, players will be able to choose among many different initiatives to accomplish their mission.  In some cases, it may be possible to gather information on the managers (for example who drinks coffee with whom, etc…).  In other cases, it may be necessary to take direct action to try to convince the managers and thus influence their willingness to adopt the proposed innovation.

With each initiative that is effectively implemented, feedback about the impact of each decision is immediately sent to the player. 

The end objective:  rally a maximum number of adopters to the new PMS, but within the shortest possible time span.

Pedagogical Objectives

The ultimate goal of the GulfCom Simulation learning experience is similar to that of the LingHe simulation, but as applied to the Middle East, i.e., its purpose is to transfer new business skills for the management of a business in a Middle East context. 

Specifically, this means: 

  • give a clear understanding of the key concepts & drivers of resistance to change
  • provide a realistic picture of how resistance is articulated in the Middle East
  • illustrate how group dynamics may be used to resolve and overcome resistance
  • provide insight into how to plan and implement change in the Middle East
  • provide insight into participants' own attitudes and behaviours regarding change
  • gain a practical understanding of the role of management and leadership in ensuring that changes are adopted
  • learn effective behaviours for avoiding and/or reducing resistance 
  • identify and mitigate root causes of resistance

Target audience

The GulfCom Simulation is aimed at those responsible for introducing and implementing knowledge and innovation strategies in Middle East organizations. This includes CEOs, GMs, HR and Project Managers, Heads of Departments, CIOs, etc…, since all are involved in not only supporting knowledge sharing and innovation, but also motivating everyone to embrace the related changes.

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