In this online simulation, students try to run a successful food truck in the city of Boomtown. Students work individually or in teams to achieve maximum revenue over 5 simulated weeks and win the "Food Truck Challenge." In each round, students make decisions about where to park and what menu item to offer in hopes of finding the best menu-location combination and yielding the highest sales. They begin by analyzing market data and making a plan, but must then decide whether to a.) go to scale right away with the food truck b.) conduct further research and analysis, or c.) experiment with a low-capacity pushcart. In the class debrief, students discuss the trade-offs between analysis, experimentation, and scale. This simulation teaches students about the value of learning by doing, prototyping, and willingness to fail. It is ideal for discussions of innovation, product development, design thinking, lean start-up, entrepreneurship, strategy, marketing, and organizational learning. It requires no student prework and can be played in 20-30 minutes on a computer, tablet, or mobile phone.
Company: Harvard Business Publishing
Approximate price: $10.00
Playtime: 30 minutes
Learning objectives: Understand how learning by doing may have substantial advantages over formal analysis, research, and planning in turbulent, unpredictable environments. Learn that prototyping has powerful benefits, because entrepreneurs and innovators can test, learn, and adapt their products and business models. Explore the challenging tradeoffs that leaders face as they launch a new business, product, service, or process.
Link to simulation home page: https://hbsp.harvard.edu/product/7201-HTM-ENG