Advanced Courses

Masterclass – Commercial Acumen

This workshop aims to develop participants existing capability in planning and executing commercial arrangements. It explores the context of the relationship and the strategies and behaviours that underpin facilitating better business outcomes.


This intensive two-day workshop explores commercial acumen for contracting professionals from start to finish, and the behaviours and methods that can be deployed throughout the life-cycle to strengthen the decisions made.

This course is designed for:

The workshop will benefit those involved in commercial contracts, negotiations and relationships who wish to develop their existing capability in managing commercial processes. This will be of particular benefit to those involved in high risk or high value arrangements.

Course structure

A practical one-day workshop consisting of six sessions involving exercises, case studies, presentations and trainer-facilitated discussions. The sessions will be led by an experienced facilitator and will feature the key principles and practical methods which may be used in the commercial contracting process, together with practical case study sessions to maximise the transfer of knowledge from the workshop to the workplace.

Benefits of attending

Attendance will help develop existing capability in commercial arrangements, and in the tools that may be used.

As well as this,delegates will gain three key benefits from attending:

  • Make better contracting judgments and quicker decisions
  • Be more likely to achieve contractual goals quickly and with less effort, disputes and cost
  • Reduce the likelihood of losing value through making elementary mistakes

Key learning outcomes

  • Be more likely to achieve contractual goals quickly and with less effort, disputes and cost
  • Reduce the likelihood of losing value through making elementary mistakes
  • Protect the interests of the organisation by the use of the supply chain and contracting life cycles
  • Safeguard against supply chain and contracting interruptions by enhancing the contracting process
  • Develop clear performance criteria that are workable for both vendor and purchaser
  • Improve ability to read and interpret contracts and financial documents that relate to the contract
  • Enhance identifying, assessing and mitigating risks skills
  • Capture performance so that it can be optimally evaluated and monitored


Course Content


Why the CEO looks at the big picture

  • Defining “acumen”
  • Identifying the key steps in strategic planning
  • Realising that “everything in business is related”
  • Determining what the various departments do to achieve the business mission
  • Describing why early supply chain problems can cause issues further along the chain

Success through numbers

  • Understanding our business and that of clients/suppliers
  • Examining how decisions can affect cash flow and profits
  • Describing how the parties make/spend their money
  • Making more objective pricing and costing decisions
  • Mitigating revenue and expenditure leakages, including fraud
  • Other party due diligence and security options

Managing the relationships

  • Identifying and improving key stakeholder, commercial and supply chain relationships
  • Describing why the contract is the framework of commercial relationship
  • Comparing and contrasting ‘managing’ and “leading”
  • Examining successful change management
  • Building trust and relationships
  • Improving communication

Effective Management of Contracts

  • Identifying the commercial and legal purposes of a contact
  • Linking the strategic plan, business case and the contract
  • Describing how to read and understand a contract
  • Creating a valid and enforceable contract
  • Planning a negotiation for desired business outcomes
  • Examining key ways to manage contract risk exposure

Managing performance

  • Reviewing performance data
  • Interpreting the patterns and trends
  • Planning and executing the review meeting

Managing deliverables successfully

  • Purpose of “deliverables”
  • Differentiating SLAs, KPIs, PIs, rebates, incentives and bonuses
  • Writing “quality” into a contract
  • Identifying the optimum number of deliverables?
  • Examining transition clauses
  • Monitoring and evaluating deliverables
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