CEOs and Senior Business Leaders often discuss that most of their people are professionally competent – i.e. they understand the responsibility of their role and do a pretty good job at it but there is a distinct lack of their people understanding the strategy of the organisation, the competitive dynamics of their industry or how what they do functionally affects the overall performance of their company.
NAB recognized the importance of enabling their graduates to accelerate their success through providing an understanding of the bigger picture of how the bank functions, the drivers of profit and performance, so that they could apply themselves practically to the organisations biggest challenges and opportunities. NAB aimed to bridge this gap and provide Graduates with a foundation of core business understanding and ability to link NAB’s goals and strategy to sustainable profitable growth.
As part of their talent development program, NAB partnered with Lighthouse to customise and facilitate Building Business Acumen programs with the 2016, 2017 and 2018 graduate cohorts. Around 100 graduates have attended in Sydney and Melbourne each year. The program has been refined each year to continuously improve based on insights from each year’s successful program.
The Graduate Business Acumen workshop is a two day journey designed to build commercial acumen in the context of NAB. The workshop provides tools and processes to equip Graduates to make better decisions aligned to NAB’s money making process and strategy.
Some of the key outcomes realised from the graduate program have included
-Laying a foundation of core business understanding upon which Graduates can build specific functional skills,
-Finding greater engagement, alignment and collaboration for achievement of company-wide goals,
-Understanding of the changing customer, competitor and business environment,
-Increased retention through an holistic learning experience that meets the desires of the current Graduate cohort, and
-Enabling greater workforce diversity by providing business/financial capability for Graduates outside traditional finance backgrounds.
NAB graduates rate the Business Acumen workshop as one of the best development opportunities within their program and feedback has been highly positive, with consistent achievement of NPS scores of over 75.
“…It’s just not something you ever get taught. This type of context and business information is invaluable..” NAB Graduate Participant
“The Building Business Acumen Workshop is an integral component of our graduates learning journey. Our graduates need to understand how we operate and generate revenue in order to make informed and strategic decisions. Navigating and understanding financial statements as well as an understanding of competitor benchmarking provides our graduates with context. The workshop is superbly facilitated with rich examples and customisation. Our graduates consistently rate this workshop as the most valuable In their development program”
Sarah McGlade, Senior Consultant, Graduate Strategy