Born To Run Things? Take A Test Run On This Strategy Software

Reading the news, you might think you could do at least as well as most chief executives running large companies these days. Here's your chance to prove it. The Strategy Game is a software package from IDP Software that simulates the business of a troubled, $150 million medical-instruments company. Your goal: Keep the company from going out of business--and perhaps turn this dog into a winner.

The $39.95 game, designed to run with Microsoft

Windows, is based on a book of the same title by Craig R. Hickman and put out by McGraw-Hill Inc., publishers of

BUSINESS WEEK. In software form, the text includes a series of quizzes and pop-up definitions that don't appear in the book. Also, you can call up panels of related information as you're reading--so-called hypertext links. As you make the required strategic decisions, the game describes the resulting financial effects. Depending on which of the many possible paths you've taken, you'll reach one of the 15 positive and 18 negative final outcomes. Alas, even if you're a hit as virtual CEO, the game provides no stock options or junkets on the corporate jet.

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal.