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Commercial Awareness – Course Details


2 days

What is this course about?
A comprehensive two-day course giving you a good grounding in the key commercial issues that are essential for business success. In today’s competitive environment, people in specialist technical, operational and administrative roles are being seen as having more and more commercial responsibility. Increasingly, these roles drive the level of service and cost delivered to the customer.

Equally, your business is influenced by the increasingly complex relationships that you forge with suppliers, customers and in-company departments.

Your organisation’s commercial ability has a real impact on the prosperity of your business. It is therefore vital that you have the knowledge to meet your customer’s requirements in a commercially sensible way. This training programme has been designed to enable you to appreciate the key commercial issues required for business success.

Key topics covered

  1. The elements of commercial behaviour
  2. The Commercial Environment
  3. An introduction to buying and selling
  4. The legal environment
  5. Contract strategy
  6. Managing contracts
  7. Risk management
  8. The financial environment
  9. Persuasion and negotiation

Who would benefit?

  • Those who deal with or manage customers, suppliers or contractors
  • Those who are working in competitive environments and need to ensure profitability, control of business risks and commercial success
  • Functional, engineering, administrative or technical staff who have a direct impact on the success of the company
  • Staff identified as having the potential to be developed
  • Those who are preparing to take up a management role

At the end of this programme you will be able to:

  • Understand how you and others can influence the commercial success of the business
  • Recognise the key commercial concepts which make the difference between success and failure
  • Have confidence when dealing with legal and financial issues
  • Identify the key aspects of commercial performance which can be improved in your organisation

Key topics covered

1. The elements of commercial behaviour?

  • The key elements of success in a business
  • Factors which make the difference between business success and failure
  • Examples of good and bad commercial behaviour
  • The commercial impact exerted by staff in non-commercial functions such as engineering, technical, HR etc.

2. The Commercial Environment

  • Understanding your company: Business strategy, Objectives / Organisation
  • Identifying and managing the network of internal and external relationships
  • Briefing and communication skills
  • Establishing and using authority and influence
  • Decision-making and management style

3. An introduction to buying and selling

  • Differing approaches to specifying goods and services
  • Managing variations and change
  • Winning new business
  • Writing proposals which increase the chance of winning business
  • Pricing: the need to win business at a reasonable margin

4. The legal environment

  • What is a contract?
  • The key elements of contract law
  • Rights and remedies when contracts go wrong
  • Specific issues such as Intellectual Property, Limits of Liability, Penalties and Damages

5. Contract strategy

  • What is a contract strategy?
  • Understanding the link between risk and the contract
  • The choices you face when thinking about a contract
  • Partnerships and alliances: making them work to your benefit

6. Managing contracts

  • Using the contract as a working tool
  • The responsibilities and obligations of those involved
  • Breach of contract, what it means and how to deal with it
  • Dispute resolution, including arbitration, mediation and conciliation
  • Claims, variations and change orders: a session explaining how not to lose the profit margin on a piece of work

7. Risk management

  • Risk management tools such as Heat Maps and Risk Registers
  • Identifying risk: a simple approach for putting your arms around everything that could go wrong
  • Prioritising risk and separating the trivial from the significant
  • Dealing with risks: risk mitigation approaches

8. The financial environment

  • Understanding the key financial documents: the balance sheet, the profit and loss account and the cash flow statement
  • Profits versus cash flow
  • Methods of costing and the benefits and pitfalls of each of them
  • Discounted cash flow and Net Present Value as a way of evaluating projects

9. Persuasion and negotiation

  • Win-win and win-perceived win forms of negotiation
  • Push and pull styles of persuasion
  • Behavioural skills in negotiation
  • Selling your ideas to others
  • The most commonly made negotiation errors
  • Dealing with difficult people and situations
  • Planning negotiation
  • Assessing your negotiation strengths and development opportunities

In-company training

Are you interested in running this course for your team or organisation?

This programme can be delivered on a date of your choice and at a location of your choice, in other words exactly where and when you need it!

From the outset we will provide you with expert advice and you will be assigned your own personal training adviser who will stay with you throughout the process.  Every team is different so we will provide you with a tailored training programme, designed around your team’s needs and focused on your desired outcomes.

All courses are followed up by a full training evaluation report and certificates of learning for each delegate. For groups of up to 12 delegates per course, our in-company training is a very cost-effective way to develop your people and improve team performance.

Get in touch today for a full quotation to suit your budget.

To discuss your requirements in more detail with one of our friendly advisers please call on 0845 130 5714 or email one of the team at Alternatively you can complete the short contact form below.

Getting in Touch

If you would like to discuss your commercial awareness training requirements with someone on the phone, please call us on 0845 130 5714 and you will be put straight through to one of our friendly advisers who will be pleased to assist you further.

Alternatively if you would prefer you can email us at or fill out our simple online contact form below and one of the team will get straight back to you.

If the exact solution does not already exist in our portfolio we will design something specifically for you.