Strategic Management Simulations

Strategic Management Solutions: a unique offering to broaden resident understanding of their decision making styles.

There is an emerging use of simulations as a formative tool for resident development. Simulations allow individuals to experience errors and failures and learn about their consequences in a safe environment. While simulations enhance safety and predictability, meaningful assessments of clinical performance and competency are critical to resident selection and evaluation. Performance measurement in the realms of strategic thinking, prioritizing, decision-making and leadership becomes crucial. Cognitive simulation offers an avenue for assessing and promoting the development of competent physicians, especially with regard to areas of decision-making and leadership.

Strategic Management Simulations (SMS) is a tool that explores how we think and has been pioneered at Stanford university School of Medicine.  

The SMS technique focuses on the competency to deal with complex problems across various fields in healthcare systems – that is, the underlying capacity of an individual or teams to make decisions that use their knowledge and information more effectively. It provides the opportunity to test these competencies under conditions of uncertainty, ambiguity, and situational change. The SMS methodology has been designed to measure whether residents can deal with complex real-world challenges that go beyond ordinary technical knowledge. The SMS measurement system highlights the underlying parameters of thinking that are critical to communication, teamwork, utilization of knowledge, breadth of approach, integration of knowledge with incoming information, use of planning and strategy. As a result, the simulation technique is able to accurately assess the performance of residents in an objective manner and in a brief period of time. The complexity theory-based Strategic Management Simulations not only allows the measurement of different components of human functioning in response to complex task settings but also permits the identification of the impact of interactions among different measures. High levels of predictive validity, reliability, and applicability of the SMS simulations to real-world settings have been repeatedly demonstrated across multiple professions, cultures, and continents. Identification of each resident’s specific limitations provides an opportunity to generate focused training to improve performance in the clinical setting. Simulation participation is followed by feedback and discussions about alternative information processing in areas of moderate and serious deficiencies. The assessment of resident competencies and specific decision-making limitations allows focused training that is cost and time effective.