A key component of UM’s Advanced Marketing Strategy Program is a simulation called INDUSTRAT. At the start of the simulation, each program participant is placed on the management team of a company competing for business against other teams in the same space. INDUSTRAT allows participants to learn modern techniques and concepts by making competitive strategic decisions and then seeing the results of those decisions. And because the repercussions of their decisions are merely “virtual,” participants can take risks and experiment with new approaches.
The teams compete though a period of several years of a virtual industry's evolution, gaining a perspective that they rarely have in their normally short-term oriented working life. INDUSTRAT mirrors the complexity of the marketing environment, including the dynamics of clients’ decision-making processes, supplier-customer relationships, product technologies and development, managing sales and technical support people and strategic alliances between competitors.
Because the exercise is competitive, it is intense and highly motivating, where participants must bear the consequences of their own decisions.