Commercial awareness can be understood as a comprehension of how businesses, enterprises, and corporate sectors work around the world.
The concept of commercial awareness is tied in with recognizing what’s happening on the global front and breaking down how it may affect your niche, industry or business model.
This is one of the most crucial transferable skills that are considered a prerequisite for most of the contemporary employment opportunities. When employees are commercially aware, they will comprehend the inward functions of both- the company they are associated with and the industry their company is related to.
Such kind of mindfulness not just improves the general performance of the employees but also permits them to perceive the various political and monetary trends that can affect their working environment.
Commercial awareness is developed by examining critical traits of the company, the industry to which it is related to and the market niche all in all.
To put it plainly, having an awareness of a business and market niche makes you a superior employee by impacting both how you function and how you think.
It is a priceless ability in an assortment of professions as well as in our daily lives. Our regular life revolves around work and home every day.
When at work, we think of what to do at home and when at home we’re worried about the job. It’s an endless loop.
But how often do we all think about what is happening around rather than occupied with just the routine work?
We are more aware of office politics and irrelevant gossips.
But, there is more to an organization. It only takes a few essential elements to learn about the business you’re working at, or you’re going to work in the future. That’s where commercial awareness comes into the picture.
When you’re aware of the business and the products, you gain a bunch of things on the professional front. Let’s see more about this here.
What is Commercial Awareness?
Commercial awareness is about knowing the products of the business, its competitors, how it makes money, the challenges and its customers.
It’s about having a deep understanding of every aspect of the functioning of a business. Though a majority of them do not have a clear idea about it, it is essential to know about the workplace for plenty of things. It does require a considerable amount of time to understand the intricacies of a business, but that will only help you in growing as an individual.
You can contribute better to the organization and expand your boundaries.
Why is Commercial Awareness Necessary?
Imagine you sit for an interview for a renowned organization.
The interviewers are impressed with what you’ve done, but when they ask you about the products and services offered by the company, you come up with something at the moment and end up losing the offer.
Well, this is the case with a majority of people. They don’t research thoroughly about the company they are applying to but go straight away and sit for the interviews. That’s not how it works. Now, this is a simple example of why commercial awareness is necessary.
Another would be when you are already working in an organization.
As a norm, each one is assigned a department and a task-specific to that.
So, most of them complete the assigned task and head home. That’s not going to take you anywhere.
If you’re aware of what is happening within the organization, what are the business challenges faced, you can voice out your ideas and help in their growth which eventually assists you to grow in your career as you get promoted for your enthusiasm and understanding.
It exhibits a positive approach to the individual who has the potential to change the course of the company for better.
Therefore, commercial awareness is essential when it comes to your career. Be it a professional or an inexperienced person; it is equally necessary for both.
We’ll see some of the ways to develop commercial awareness and be better at your job.
How to incorporate Commercial Awareness?
If you aren’t aware of what your organization does or have the surface level knowledge, then it’s high time to start researching on it more.
There are plenty of ways to learn about what is happening in the markets. You will be able to do better after reading this.
1. Knowledge about the products
Knowing about what your company does, what are its products, the services offered and the technicalities of every product are necessary.
You might as well be knowing them if you’re working in a corporate, but if you’re not, then you must know all these for a better career. Understanding them can help you in generating ideas to improve the products for the success of the organization.
2. Know who are the customers and competitors
Each company develops products and targets specific customers. You need to know what type of customers they are focusing on and get a better idea about them. As you know, customers are the soul of any company.
Also, knowing the competitors is extremely useful and is a part of commercial awareness. Once you understand what they do and their weaknesses, you can suggest ways to improve your business. It’s a great way to know and show your knowledge on the same.
3. Be Aware of Trends in Markets
If you’re not from a commerce background, you might find it hard to understand the metrics and the market trends, but there is the Internet where you can learn from scratch about the markets and become a pro at them.
Study the stock markets and share prices and whether they are rising or not because a company’s success depends on the prices of its stocks. You can know where it stands and what should be done to be better.
4. Understanding Finance
For a few, the word finance can be intimidating, and if you’re one of them, then you need to put in extra hours to learn the terms. Finance is not as complicated as you think. It just takes a considerable amount of practice, but after that, it’s simple.
For you to understand the markets, you should know the finance jargon. Only then you will be able to participate in giving better inputs. Subscribe to blogs or finance channels related to finance.
They keep you updated with the latest market trends every day. You can also cash in on online courses to understand the basics or grab a book from the library.
5. Watching News channels
Another best way to learn about the markets and business is to watch plenty of news channels, preferably the business ones.
Even if you don’t understand initially, the more you keep watching them, the more familiar you will be with the terms and those you can always look up to Google. Business channels are one of the best resources to understand market trends.
Familiarize yourself with all the business terms indulge in business conversations more and more.
6. Reading Business Magazines
Business newsletters and magazines are the treasure trove of knowledge. If you’re more of the type who loves to read, you can go for the business pages and magazines. They offer you a variety of information and help you with a better understanding of a business.
7. Work Experience
If you’re already working, then you would have gained some amount of how an organization functions. Now that you have the experience, if you read the newspaper and business pages, you get a better insight into the markets and increase your awareness.
Instead of scrolling countless times on social media, you can navigate the business pages and understand better about the markets.
This is for the ones who do not yet have any work experience. It is essential to learn things practically rather than books or the Internet. Once you’ve read everything, you can apply for internships so that you get a clear picture of how an organization functions and explore your potential.
Internships teach you a bunch of things where you can go from having zero knowledge to becoming an expert in a particular field. So, be enthusiastic and go all the way out to learn new things and take up responsibilities as you progress. It immensely shapes you for a better future.
Importance of Commercial Awareness in a Job Interview
As mentioned earlier, it is necessary to know about the organization before you head to an interview. It gives you an edge over other candidates.
Recruiters examine the candidate’s knowledge, both personally and professionally. It shows that you’re interested in joining the company and has a better understanding of the products, which in turn helps in hiring you for better positions or better packages.
Interviews go smoothly when you know about your resume and the organization perfectly.
Verify if that’s the type of company you want to work in and if the values align well with your goals and future undertakings. As that’s what recruiters look in you when they are hiring someone for a vacant position.
How to have Commercial Awareness in Job Interviews?
- Be aware of the most significant Issues your industry faces today
- Know the key issues that your industry may face in the future
- Be clear about the aspects you like about that company
- Have the knowledge and industry presence of the competitors?
- Be clear about what commercial awareness is
- Have clear views about some trending news/stories in your niche/industry
- Knowledge about how current politics may affect your industry
- Learning about the sectors that you consider best for investing right now
- Knowledge about the right ways for responding to the complaints of customers in your niche
Final Thoughts about Commercial Awareness!
Commercial awareness is a must for every individual in the working sector and staying up to date helps one to participate better in the meetings and also get promotions in the future.
Being aware is essential for a rookie who is yet to step into the corporate world and also the ones who are already working. That way, the chances of having a fulfilling career is higher. So, always stay up to date on what is happening around you and your workplace mainly.
If you’re curious to know about the functioning and want to grow in your professional life, commercial awareness is the thing.
It’s up to you to take in all the knowledge that is out there for free. In this technology world, nothing is ever difficult to get your hands on. The only way you can grow in your career is by possessing in-depth knowledge of the organization you’re working in.
How important do you consider commercial awareness for your professional as well as personal growth?