Today's business acumen training goes well beyond financial statement literacy.

What is Business Acumen Training

Business acumen training is corporate training that is designed to improve the strategic thinking of employees in order to help an organization better execute the corporate strategy. Business acumen training is most effective as a hands-on activity that includes financial acumen, effective leadership, strategic thinking, cross functional collaboration, innovative thinking and more.

Business acumen training traditionally focuses solely on financial acumen. Today’s organization requires far more than financial literacy. The entire organization must be able to quickly adapt to rapid strategic changes. To accomplish this, business acumen training must go well beyond simple financial statement learning. Training must look at the entire strategic, organizational, and behavioral requirements.

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Business Simulation In Business Acumen Training? Absolutely!

A business simulations is commonly used (and demanded) for business acumen training:

To increase engagement and learning retention with corporate training or employee development.

To apply highly complex and theoretical topics in an effort to increase corporate training learning retention and understanding.

To increase the speed and effectiveness or corporate change initiatives. This is often referred to as strategy acceleration.

Business simulations are most commonly used within corporate training and employee development initiatives. In many instances, these tools are used within corporate leadership development programs in an effort to increase learning, learning retention, and accelerate corporate change initiatives (strategy acceleration).

The highly distilled summary is that active learning is far better than passive learning. Putting all the fancy research aside, most naturally accept that corporate training participants intuitively understand and agree with this: adults learn better by doing (trial and error). A business simulation and puts this fact into action with exceptionally low risk. Utilizing a leadership development business simulation is an exceptionally effective learning tool. With the exception of either teaching the subject matter yourself or learning through real-life trial and error, a business simulation is one of the most effective ways to learn new subject matter. The ultimate goal is to enable learners to immediately start using the subject matter being introduced. By using the subject matter in a safe and lifelike situation (i.e. within a business simulations), people begin to change their behavior naturally. This is why mission-critical disciplines such as military or aviation industries rely so heavily on simulations. Business simulations within leadership development are the fastest and most effective means to safely apply complex training theory and rapidly transform it into natural behavior.

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Most Common Types of Business Acumen Training

Business acumen training has traditionally focused solely on financial acumen with a little “strategic thinking” added on. This simply isn’t enough for today’s organization. Today’s business acumen training includes:

  • Financial Statement Acumen
  • Strategic Thinking Development
  • Leadership Behavior Effectiveness
  • Innovative Thinking
  • Cross Functional Collaboration
  • Organizational Resilience
  • A lot more…

Using a Business Acumen Training Simulation - What To Know

Business acumen training simulations are most often used within leadership development corporate training programs and/or strategic alignment initiatives. A business acumen simulation incorporate complicated business acumen training topics such as optimal leadership behavior, strategy development, strategy execution, strategic thinking, financial acumen, cross functional collaboration, innovative thinking, and more. Business acumen training simulations are most often used due to their ability to enable today’s digital audience to learn, try, reflect, and apply. A business acumen training simulation are an engaging tool to adds great benefits to existing corporate leadership development programs. These corporate learning tools are helping bridge the growing leadership gap. Business strategy simulations are engaging that should align very closely with the corporate training goals and objectives.

Tip: Keep your business acumen training simulation small and focused. Large multi-day simulations should be reserved for very specific cases. In most cases, a very focused business training simulation will provide the greatest benefits with the lowest associated time and expense. Strategic business training simulations are the most widely requested solutions and most popular with participants. This is largely due to their highly engaging learning methods and extreme level of job applicability. Using a strategic business simulation within leadership development as become far more normal and some of the top companies globally use these solutions whenever possible.

Advantages Strategic Business Simulations For Business Acumen Training:

  1. Extremely applicable leadership development or other training that applies leadership, strategic thinking, business acumen, cross functional collaboration, and more.
  2. Highly engaging with extremely high levels of corporate learning retention.
  3. Highly applicable corporate training with high connection to business outcomes.

Disadvantages of Strategic Business Simulations In Business Acumen Training:

  1. Can get complicated quickly (but this is avoidable if you’re careful)
  2. Should requires facilitators have actual real-world leadership experience
  3. Requires some forethought and implementation planning

Where Are Business Acumen Training Simulations Most Commonly Used?

The most commonly used programs business training simulations are used within corporate training and development are:

  • Business acumen training within leadership development programs
  • Business acumen training for strategic change and strategy execution initiatives
  • Business acumen training for complex change management initiatives.
  • Many more…

Business Simulations for Use Within Business Acumen Training

Business simulations have become almost commonplace in business acumen training programs. As mentioned above in ‘improve performance, make bolder more profitable decisions, and outperform the competition’, this is due to the contemporary complexity that goes into modern corporate leadership development programs. Business acumen training simulations are used to teach effective leadership behavior, strategic thinking, business acumen, cross functional collaboration, and more. For more information on utilizing a business simulation for leadership development, see ‘improve performance, make bolder more profitable decisions, and outperform the competition’ above.

Accelerate Strategic Change
Business Simulations for Strategy Acceleration

Business Acumen Training For Today's Audience - Things Have Changed

Strategy execution is more important than ever. Aligning employees around a single strategy is complicated. This is achieved by utilizing state-of-the-art business acumen training simulations combined with in-person facilitated workshops. The results are a company’s ability to execute more effectively. This is almost entirely achieved by sharing corporate knowledge that creates strategic alignment within the organization. Business acumen training simulations within leadership development achieves this very effectively. By aligning management with the corporate strategy, employees will understand the what, why, and how of your corporate direction. Combine technology and learning utilizing a business acumen training simulation of your company and industry, management experiences a 1-2 day workshop. During the workshop, managers will Live a day and your CEO® in order to naturally learn the what, why, and how of change.

Business Simulation Tips, Tricks, and Getting Started Guide

Getting started using business simulations can be daunting and intimidating. Taken directly from a Forbes Article titled, “Business Simulations Can Be A Powerful Tool For Leadership Development — But Proceed With Caution“, here are the top tips to getting started:

  1. Start with a small business simulation – The single most important pearl of wisdom is to start small. The business training simulation should be a small portion of your budget and program time. Experiment with something that is ready to go or requires minimal tailoring. You can take on something larger after you’ve gained experience and have seen where expansion is justified.
  2. Practice extreme focus. The importance of staying focused with a business simulation is essential. Leadership-development managers often call with a laundry list of requirements from the business simulation. It is critical that you sit down with a piece of paper and write down the goals and objectives of your leadership-development program. The simulation needs to align behind these learning objectives and not stray from the path. This will help your training participants better align with the training goals and allow them to apply the content more effectively in their day-to-day work. Avoid expansion or scope creep.
  3. Consider all business simulation modes. When people think about business simulations, they visualize amazing digital tools. The computer-based solutions are exciting, and they sizzle. This is great and can sometimes be important (did someone say buy-in?). But don’t discount the effectiveness of simple paper-based solutions.
  4. Stay in charge of your business simulation. Most companies contract an outside firm to create more complex business simulations for leadership development. These are complicated tools and it takes a lot of time to create simulations that are effective. But remember, you are in charge. When you work with a firm, don’t get persuaded to go out of your comfort zone. Remember, these firms are working for you and you are the boss.
  5. Be comfortable with your business simulation provider. This may seem like common sense, but it’s surprising how often we clean up problematic business simulation programs because a company chose a provider that was “the best in the industry,” but that they felt slightly bullied by. Ensure you are comfortable with your business simulation partner.

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What is a Business Simulation?

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