Business Acumen: a keenness and depth of perception . . .
Business acumen: a keenness and depth of perception in practical matters of financial and behavioral tendencies to enable good, quick business decisions.
The target audience for business acumen skill development training are those close to the action. Where their decisions aggregated significantly impact the financial success of the organization: managers and team leaders with technical backgrounds that were promoted from within, customer service team members, program and project managers, engineers, estimators, team leaders, and any one else who does not have a financial background yet their decisions directly affect the financial health of the organization. Our effort here is to take business acumen skills, that many see as a complex issue, and break in down into a logical flow of measurements that can be applied to successfully lead a team to met the financial goals of the organization. And then use the resources of the team to analyze, dissect, and review the processes and procedures used by the team to add value to the organization.
This business acumen course is designed to apply business acumen to the day-to-day operation of the team by developing:
1. An understanding of financial metrics and tools that gauge the cost effectiveness of the team
2. Decision making skills that balance risk and consequences, keep customers happy, and maximize the contribution
3. Skills in thought leadership: to engage team members in non-defensive dialogues that creates an environment where they take the action needed to implement the change initiatives
4. Empower team members who participate in the analysis, craft alternatives and fully support implementation of the selected alternative solution
5. Balance between the emotions of great customer service and the reality of the cost structure
6. Skills to overcome resistance of team members to change
How Companies Are Improving Business Acumen at Every Level of the Organization
How do you define “business acumen“? If acumen is “quickness, accuracy, and keenness of judgment or insight,” then when you pair it to business you get a powerful “ability to make profitable and quick business decisions.”
How to improve business acumen
To improve business acumen it certainly helps to have strong quantitative, analytical skills and know how to use financial statements and key ratios. But there is more to it.
Business Acumen Delivers Skills and Knowledge.
Specifically, Business Acumen captures the essential skills and knowledge needed to:
1. Identify problems and opportunities in internal operations and external business
2. Create & innovate options to address problems and opportunities in manner that creates economic value for the company
3. Develop an execution pathway to deliver the desired results
4. Monitor, re-adjust, improvise, and learn forward.
Do You Have a Business Acumen Gap in Your Company?
How many of your leaders can make the following statements?
1. I understand the big picture. I understand how individual business decisions are interrelated, and my impact on company value creation and the customer experience.
2. I possess a deep understanding of key financial levers and the tradeoffs and benefits of executing the company’s business strategy.
3. I recognize how external marketplace realities are affecting the company’s ability to drive revenue and profitability.
4. I appreciate and embrace new initiatives
5. I understand how my company delivers shareholder value.
Most companies need to guide their leaders through at least one or more of the statements above.