Commercial awareness

The commercial world can be daunting for those not used to it, and this course has been specifically designed to equip participants with the skills, perspectives and tools to deal comfortably with the complexities of commercial life.

Who should attend?

This course is designed for those new to the commercial world – those at the start of their career or more senior staff at a point where new responsibilities will be bringing them into the world of buying and selling.

Topics covered in course

  • The financial structure of businesses and the profit motive
  • Markets and the organisations within them
  • Prices, cost and value – total cost of ownership
  • What is real value – and how to create it
  • Cost-benefit analysis – writing a business case
  • Buying and selling – chosing the right suppliers
  • Contracts – what they are, and what makes a good one
  • Managing contracts well
  • Incentives, penalties and payment by results – how to ensure excellent service delivery
  • SRM and CRM – Supplier Relationship Management and Customer Relationship Management
  • Innovation and risk

Course structure

The course will be delivered as a mix of theory and practical sessions  – with plenty of individual feedback.

Participants will be encouraged to write their own commercial action plan and take what they have learnt back into their organisations.


At the end of the course participants will have:

  • A clear knowledge of the profit motive and how it influences the behaviour of commerical organisations
  • A good appreciation of the difference between price, cost and value
  • The skills and techniques to write a compelling business case
  • An understanding of how to create and manage successful contracts
  • The ability to balance innovation and risk in the commercial environment