The Infinite Game
Read in 26 min.
Listen in 33 min.
Learn the key ideas of the book by Simon Sinek

The Infinite Game

The rules to creating a successful business

Behind every great company is a great plan, but contrary to what we might think, it is not focussed on financial performance: visionary leaders, who tackle business like a never-ending game, without stopping at a succession of short-term goals, know this very well. It is a plan that is built on a foundation of employees and customers, trust between parties and a Just Cause, to be pursued at all costs. In his book The Infinite Game, Simon Sinek gives us an in-depth explanation of the mechanisms of the game and why putting it into practice from the outset is completely worth it.

The Infinite Game
Read in 26 min.
Listen in 33 min.

Understanding the difference between finite game and infinite game can help change our lives

As the professor James P. Carse wrote in his work Finite and Infinite Games: A Vision of Life as Play and Possibility published in 1986, “there are at least two kinds of games”, whereby games we mean situations implemented by at least two players, “one could be called finite; the other infinite. A finite game is played for the purpose of winning, an infinite game for the purpose of continuing play.”

Finite games can be defined as those in which the players and rules are known to everyone and the game has a clear objective. Whereas infinite games involve all those circumstances in which players can be known and unknown, where there are no rules and there is not even an objective to reach, which would signal the end of the game. Finite and infinite games are all around us, and they can be found in any area of our daily lives, both personal and business. For example, football championships and matches are finite games; but a marriage or a career are infinite games. A way to help distinguish between the two is to think of the concept of victory: you can win a championship, while you cannot win a marriage or a career.

A finite game involves short term thinking, with objectives that can be reached relatively easily and quickly, and a vision which is generally short and immediate. On the other hand, since it does not have set rules or a specific number of players, an infinite game exists in the world of possibilities and is perpetual, adaptable and resilient. That is exactly what a good business should have.


The key ideas of "The Infinite Game"

Understanding the difference between finite game and infinite game can help change our lives
Stepping out of the winning / losing mindset combination can revolutionise a business
By following a few rules you can become a leader with an infinite mindset
To activate infinite mode we need a Just Cause
Learning to recognise real Just Causes from false ones
To play the infinite game we need to turn the CEO into a CVO (Chief Vision Officer)
Capitalism today can be reset with an infinite mindset
A leader with an infinite mindset puts people before profit
A good leader recognises little cracks in a company’s ethics and lazy leadership
We need to move away from the concept of adversaries towards the idea of worthy rivals
A leader with an infinite mindset pursues their Just Cause and practices Existential Flexibility
Making the leap towards the infinite game takes courage but it is never a lonely transition
Take-home message
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