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Change Management Simulation

Be better equipped to succeed with change management through risk-free experiential learning. The Cohort Change Management Business Simulation helps managers and leaders learn the valuable skills needed to manage a prospective change with senior stakeholders. In this simulation, teams engage with 10 senior executives over a nine-month period for the purpose of swaying their support for each team's proposed major change to the organization.

You need to engage with everybody to make change happen – nobody is unimportant.


Cohort is conducted using a highly structured approach that blends gamification, informal/social learning, behavioral economics, and business simulation. The central task is to build relationships and have authentic communications with senior people about a proposed change on both a one-on-one basis and in small groups.

The main challenge is that these stakeholders may be your peers or, more likely, more senior than you, so you lack direct authority to tell them to do anything! To mitigate this lack of authority, you need to develop indirect influencing skills and the ability – and courage – to be able to "borrow authority" whenever you get stuck.

People can be influenced and influential in many different ways – be creative!


An important tool for this change scenario is the Stakeholder Map. This helps you analyze a set of stakeholders across two critical dimensions – their Attitude to the change versus their Influence on the change – to determine your engagement priorities.

Each of the 10 stakeholders has a public profile that gives information about who they network with, their position in the company, and their reputation. This profile helps you make decisions on which interactions to make with each stakeholder and when. After an initial interaction, participants gain access to stakeholders' private profiles, which give more information on each stakeholder to help inform future decisions.

Participants commented how they quickly developed valuable insights in key areas such as how to influence others, working effectively in teams, and operating successfully under constant time pressure and change…

Davy McAlinden, Programme Director, at The William J Clinton Leadership Institute

Cohort can optionally be tailored to each company that runs the simulation, allowing participants to start in the context of the company and/or project they are working on. It can be run over half a day, or over one full day if you choose to add additional theory and exercises, it also has internet resiliency to avoid loss of simulation information during internet outages. The book A Systemic Guide to Change Management in Organizational Teams may also be included to support the underlying theory of the simulation.

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