How It Works


Support Business Leaders

Talent development and capability building is on every leader’s radar screen, and business acumen is a central theme. Executives want employees to think and act like business strategists as they contribute to the success of the company.

The Business Acumen Institute was created to support business leaders in their quest to develop a solid portfolio of strategically-minded business people.

We work with the world’s leading organizations to cultivate business acumen through our four-dimensional professional development program, including:

  • Business Acumen Assessment
  • The Business Acumen Handbook
  • Business Acumen Workshop
  • Professional Development Action Plan

The Business Acumen Assessment

The business acumen assessment is a profile tool made up of 36 questions across seven groups. It’s designed to help participants understand areas of business acumen that they need to cultivate. Program participants are given access to this assessment upon enrollment and are encouraged to measure their level of business acumen.

The Business Acumen Workshop

The Business Acumen Workshop is designed to help business people:

  • Master the business building blocks that include people, processes, and products
  • Leverage financial concepts to solve problems and make decisions
  • Develop a performance-oriented mindset to deliver business results

The Business Acumen Handbook

Each participant will receive a copy of Steven Haines, Business Acumen Handbook. This top-selling business book guides you across the corporate terrain as you gain an appreciation for the interconnectedness of all parts of the business, how to process reams of data, collaborate with others, and contribute to the strategic goals of the firm.

Professional Development Action Plan

Participants leave with a professional development action plan tailored to their career, and organization. We strive to create an action plan empowers people to fine-tune their business acumen and excel in their careers.

Business acumen is the term used to describe a person’s understanding of various dimensions of a business that are “in play” as situations arise. This “business common sense” is built up over time, just like musicians or pilots, who get better with practice.

Gain Competitive Advantage with Business Acumen Skills

Business executives have a lot to worry about. Given their priorities, the outcomes they seek don’t always hit the mark. Many of their concerns focus on the skills and capabilities of business people, encapsulated in a singular term: “business acumen.”   The cultivation of business talent must take center stage, and business acumen development must be part of every business conversation.

To that end, leaders embrace business people who see the big picture of business. Therefore, they want people who can build political capital and get things done – especially in complex organizations. They demand a robust combination of strategic thinking, cross-functional orchestration, and fact-based decision making.

The Business Acumen Workshop offers a critical building block to any organization’s future success. The program equips business people with the wherewithal to collaborate, fine-tune processes, and improve business performance.   Here’s how:

  • Focusing on critical behaviors (e.g. mindsets and mental models) to help business people transform how they carry out their work and interact with others.
  • Working on life-like case exercises that help them work through the kind of challenges that they may face as they carry out their work.
  • Collaborating in problem-solving and making decisions.


We know that one size doesn’t fit all. When you partner with the Business Acumen Institute, we’ll work together to adjust or modify our Business Acumen Workshop to help you achieve the learning goals that are most critical.