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Stakeholder Insights using Game Theory

A half-day workshop to prioritize objectives, think differently and
build a stronger team

Drawing on hundreds of private sector consulting engagements with some of the world’s largest organizations, Open Options offers a robust half-day workshop introducing organizations to game theory and how it can be used to navigate multi-stakeholder challenges.

Specifically designed for public sector clients, this workshop is an abbreviated version of Open Options’ commercial offering. Rather than a questionnaire survey, two 6-hour workshops and a 40 to 60-page report showing the best path forward, this compressed version is 4 hours long, focuses more on education and includes stakeholder characterizations instead of a full strategy report.

This team building workshop will educate participants on the science of game theory, help teams align their thinking on strategic issues, communicate more effectively, and make better decisions. Most importantly, workshop participants will leave with exciting insights and a new way of thinking about issues currently facing their organization. It is ideal for management retreats or part of larger team meetings.

Stakeholder Challenges

More than ever before, organizations must consider the reactions of various stakeholders when making decisions and planning for the future. Whether it is the reactions of lobby groups, other levels of government or commercial entities that must be considered, organizations now recognize that whether they reach a positive outcome or a negative outcome depends on the complex interplay between various stakeholders, not solely on their own actions.

Unfortunately, many organizations lack a structured process to tackle multiple stakeholder problems. Fortunately, Open Options provides an engaging and proven facilitated process to help organizations think differently, prioritize their own objectives and introduce teams to the power of game theory.

The half-day workshop

While the schedule can be altered to fit your team’s needs, a typical Stakeholder Insights session with Open Options is four hours long. It most often starts with an hour of introduction to game theory. This section is referred to as “Mind Traps” and showcases some counterintuitive insights into decision making, uses interactive modules to illustrate key points and explains some of the most common game theory scenarios.

The next two hours take the group through a structured process to brainstorm key players, important options and the priorities of each player related to the chosen issue. This section of the workshop is entirely interactive and ensures every participant will have a chance to be heard. 

The final hour begins with a short break while some analysis is completed, followed by a review of the results with the workshop team. The report, also provided as a stand-along document a few days after the workshop session, includes who has the power in this situation, who is your ally, who is your opponent, which players will be aggressive, which players are open to influence and which players are unhappy with the status quo. The analysis can also provide a glimpse into the full power of game theory by showing one possible stable outcome of the situation known as the Nash Equilibrium.

Working with Open Options

Open Options workshops are easy to plan and stress-free.

Prior to the sessions, we will work with you to clearly define a relevant issue facing your team to keep the workshops efficient and maximize the engagement of your team. This issue statement becomes the focus of the modeling exercise.

On the day of the workshops, only a reserved room, a large screen and a projector are required. For smaller groups, seating should be laid out in a U-shape or around a large table to facilitate discussion among all attendees. For larger groups, 6 to 8 people per table is best.

Selecting attendees

Stakeholder Insights sessions work best with 10 or more people. It can be helpful to have participants with different viewpoints and job functions to maximize cross-functional information exchange.

Next steps

Please contact us for more information and to schedule an insightful and invigorating team exercise focused on multiple stakeholder problems.