Our firm, 40Digits, has always operated a little outside the box. This is true even for the way we run the company. (And by we, I mean the collective we, because all of our employees or “Digits” play an important role in running the company.)

We practice Open-Book Management, and have since 2013. 40Digits journey into Open-Book Management began when we met the team at The Great Game of Business, Inc. (GGOB) in 2010. We developed their conference website and this year, for the first time, we are speaking at the conference as practitioners of Open-Book Management and The Great Game of Business.

Making the decision to implement The Great Game of Business (GGOB) is a big one. If you’ve been a follower of The Great Game of Business, Inc. for a while, you know the benefits of running your organization this way.

The Great Game of Business approach is simple, it’s just not easy. It involves teaching employees at every level of the business to think and act like business owners, and being brave enough to empower them to do so. If you’re considering a DIY approach to getting started, below are a few valuable lessons we learned in the process.

The Great Game of Business


3 DIY Implementation Lessons Learned

You might pull the wrong lever.

It’s easy to focus on what you believe is the right metric without recognizing the potential outcome of focusing on that metric. Meaning, by focusing on “X” you may negatively impact “y”. This is exceptionally critical when it comes to determining the components of your bonus program.

Your team has to understand the “why”.

As a business owner or leader, you have context into the big picture. It’s important that you provide your team with the same context so they understand why a change needs to be made or focus should be put on one area of the business. This way change isn’t viewed as simply a top-down directive.

You have to be willing to be real.

Depending on your perspective, sharing the extremes that happen in business may be challenging. It’s important that your team doesn’t get the watered-down or rosey view. Celebrate and reward the good and take time to discuss the bad. Both are great learning opportunities and transparency is one of the biggest drivers of employee engagement.

Our team has learned so much about business and one another through this experience. We look forward to sharing the some of the untold stories throughout our journey into The Great Game of Business and more valuable lessons learned at the annual conference on Open-Book Management coming up September 7–9, 2016 in Dallas, TX.

For more information about the conference visit:

We hope to see you there!

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This first-ever live Periscope analytics solution, developed by 40Digits and our partners at Barkley, has the ability to provide brands and businesses with access to demographic user data that could completely change the way marketers leverage the Periscope platform.



The 40Digits team loves to take the road less traveled, and when our partner company Barkley asked if running a live auction on Periscope was even possible, we rolled up our sleeves and got to work.

Periscope, a live-streaming social app with more than 10 million registered viewers internationally, does not have a public API. After initial review, it was thought that running an interactive game, with any sort of accuracy, was impossible.

Challenge accepted.

The concept began in June 2016 with the desire of a national brand to auction off swag using the Periscope platform. Because of the private nature of Periscope’s API, typical requests were unavailable.  After digging into the details of Periscope’s streaming system, the Development Team at 40Digits identified an alternative method to collect and correlate data without using a single call to Periscope’s private API.  They also discovered they could monitor and measure valuable viewer data in real-time.  This discovery opened the door to a much larger opportunity to leverage the Periscope platform, especially regarding a real-time online auction application.

“One of the best aspects of being a player in this industry is getting a challenge of this magnitude. It’s something anyone can figure out, but no one else has done,” – Luke Hurd, Technical Director at 40Digits.

“It doesn’t require the smartest people, perfect code, or even a flawless approach – just a dirty idea and a creative method of execution.  When we finally had the ‘eureka’ moment of how to accurately collect data, it was a total re-enforcement of why we all love coming into work every day.  At that point, we just had to build it before anyone else.”

After several weeks of roadblocks, many late nights pouring over Periscope’s terms of service, and understanding the technical hurdles, the 40Digits Development Team successfully architected a custom solution that measures user engagement and reports engagement in real-time through an administrative interface. Using this data, the 40Digits team was able to design and build an interface that ranks viewers based on their engagement during any chosen Periscope broadcast.

The “impossible” part of this challenge was accomplishing this without accessing the private Periscope API, which is a direct violation of the Terms of Service.

Impossible achieved.

Working closely with our partners at Barkley, launch day was a wild success.

Launch stats:

  • Total live views: 26,000 (approximately)
  • Total brand heart growth on Periscope: from 9,432 to 826,118; Over 8600% growth in 33 hours
  • 7,560 Twitter mentions; 5.25 mentions per minute; Almost 100% increase per average day
  • Periscope CEO shared the live-auction launch video 




This first-ever live Periscope analytics solution, developed by 40Digits and our partners at Barkley, has the ability to provide brands and businesses with access to demographic user data that could completely change the way marketers leverage the Periscope platform.

That’s big.

“A live auction is just one use-case of accessing this data in real-time. We see the possibility for brands and businesses to actually leverage this relatively untapped social community in an entirely new way,” – Katy Hornaday, VP and Creative Director at Barkley.

40Digits is proud to share this accomplishment with the world. It’s one that required a unique approach and critical thinking. In pushing the limits of possible, 40Digits and Barkley achieved something that has never been done before. It’s certainly a very gratifying place to be. Special thanks to “Digits” David Harris, Luke Hurd, Dave Corner, and CK Hicks for making it happen, and to our partners at Barkley for asking for the impossible.

For more information about leveraging the power of Periscope data for your brand or agency, contact us at


About 40Digits:

40Digits is an innovative digital shop comprised of nearly 40 researchers, strategists, designers, project managers, and developers with a passion for crafting solutions that solve the right business and user challenges. In 2014, 40Digits joined the Barkley family of partner companies and has since led user research, strategy, experience design, and development initiatives for international brands such as Cargill, Hershey’s, PlyGem, and Spirit Airlines.



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We’re Honored to Announce


40Digits is honored to announce that we have been selected as Kansas City’s #1 Fastest Growing Company by Ingram’s Magazine. We are humbled to be featured among so many successful companies, and thankful for all of the Digits and clients who are responsible for our growth. It’s been an amazing ride since 2008. We can’t wait to see what the future holds.

To see the full story click here.

P.S. – We’re hiring!


40Digits Directors 

40Digits DirectorsPictured left to right: Kristin Binford, Chris Langston, Tim Tuttle, Kim Laws, Luke Hurd, Josh Burch, Kelly Thompson, and Megan Hopkins.

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40D-Barkley-Rocket40Digits is pleased to share that as of July 1, 2014 we have officially joined the Barkley family of partner companies! We began our company in 2008. Its growth over the past 6 years has been predominantly built on our support of other agencies, internal marketing teams, and a great bunch of regional direct clients that stemmed from personal referrals. We have always loved what we do and the clients we worked with and were not actively seeking a merger or acquisition when we were presented the opportunity for a permanent partnership. We quickly learned that Barkley shares the same values and dedication we hold dear. This is a great opportunity for 40Digits to add support, expertise, and resources to expand the reach of our core mission for the company and its employees. While it is a significant move for us strategically, it is important to let you know that, except for some administrative things like address changes, how we work together with you will not change:

  • Our business model and services we provide will not change. We are dedicated to being the best partners we can to our client agencies and companies, providing the same quality UX and web development work we built our business on.
  • You will continue to work with the same Digits you have in the past. Our people and roles aren’t changing.
  • We will continue to operate from our current offices in Springfield, St. Louis and Kansas City. All the contact information for us will remain the same.
  • Our fee structure will not change.

If you have any questions about this exciting news and what it will mean for you, please contact any of us at any time. We are grateful to you not only for giving us the opportunity to provide you with our digital services but for your loyalty and friendship. We are confident that our new affiliation will serve us all well.

-The 40Digits Team

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Over the last few months, 40Digits has had the pleasure of working with Design Ranch on the new Helix Architecture + Design website. The combination of each company’s strengths resulted in a wildly successful final product.

Design Ranch designed a minimal & lasting layout that pushes boundaries of architecture sites. 40Digits then brought the designs to life on the desktop and adapted the designs to the limitations of a smaller screen while leveraging the tactile nature of touch devices.

Please visit Helix Architecture + Design on each of your devices and let us know what you think.

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