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Commercial awareness

Updated on 10 June 2020

Commercial awareness

It's the buzz phrase of the day, but what is commercial awareness and how can you demonstrate you've got it to those potential employers?

What is commercial awareness?

Commercial awareness is vital to getting a job with most businesses, as it shows that you have researched the company and its industry in depth. Commercial awareness can be summed up as understanding the wider environment in which your chosen company works, from its place in the market to how it interacts with its customers.

Why do employers want commercial awareness?

Employers want commercially aware staff as it means that they understand the company, the industry issues it faces and where it is looking to go in the future. To employers, a commercially aware applicant has done their research and shown commitment to joining the company. Being aware of the issues facing your industry will give you more to talk about during an interview and will improve your knowledge of a particular industry, meaning you might even look for alternative roles in that industry.

How can you show you have it?

You can show commercial awareness by reading up on background information about your chosen company. You are almost guaranteed to be asked \"What do you know about us?" at an interview. Other telltale commercial awareness questions include "Why are you applying for this position?" and "Which living person do you most admire?".

Other good ways of demonstrating commercial awareness is by:

  • Reading the relevant industry press to find out about latest trends
  • Relating your own experiences to business
  • Coming up with solutions to existing problems at your business

How is it used in the world of work?

Commercial awareness is all about being knowledgeable about your industry. The more you know about your field, the role you will have and how you hope to add value to your business, the more likely you and your employer will succeed.

All companies strive to be better than their competitors, so it stands to reason that the companies with the most motivated, knowledgeable and informed employees will normally outperform others.

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