What is the #1 Skill Leaders Need? Business Acumen
You may have been tasked to “increase the business acumen skills” of your organization’s leaders. Or perhaps you’re curious about what business acumen includes, exactly. We’d like to present our perspective on why every corporate leader needs more than just a basic level of business acumen.
At IndustryMasters, we believe business acumen goes beyond finance and accounting. It exceeds simply understanding an organization’s or industry’s key performance indicators and various ratios. We believe business acumen is all that AND the ability to apply that knowledge. It’s about making sound decisions for your organization. Similarly, it’s about achieving a level of financial literacy that you can make sound decisions with the big picture in mind, and the smaller details.
Business Acumen is understanding your organization’s strategy and how that compares to your competitors. That includes knowing how your organization creates value, how it attracts customers, how it delivers to those customers and how your business course corrects for market changes and competitive activity.
Understanding these is critical for leaders to confidently make sound business decisions. Above all, business acumen is about understanding financial metrics well enough to create a sound business strategy. The ability to understand the organization’s financial statements well enough to respond appropriately should be every business manager’s goal.
Simulations as Opportunities to Test New Ideas
We create complex virtual worlds in which time advances quickly allowing learners to witness the results of their decisions immediately. Business simulations offer a test bed or sandbox for practice in decision making. Simulations include real-world challenges and crises that push learners to learn, apply and adapt. For example, our solutions typically present a range of financial metrics to discover, apply and more deeply understand. As such, participants are better able to apply that new knowledge to their actual jobs.
Above all, business simulations also offer an opportunity to step aside and analyze the situation from various perspectives. This is an advantage that real-world crises often do not allow.
Adding a simulation to a business acumen program ensures that learners emerge with a stronger financial acumen. As a result, they feel less intimidation around the subject and greater confidence in their ability to quickly make sound decisions.