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Looking to Sharpen Your Business Skills?

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There are no shortcuts to success in the business world – you really need to put the effort into growing and refining your skills to get ahead and achieve your business career goals.

The secret to succeeding in business lies in the skills you use to gain your competitive edge. This can lead to elusive career opportunities, higher incomes, generous bonuses and perks. Whether you are just starting out on your career path, of if you are a seasoned professional, it still pays to ensure your skills are up to date and distance learning qualifications are a great way to do that.

If you are an employer, you need to make sure that your team have the skills to maintain and grow your business. If you identify any gaps in your team’s skills, you can then take steps to develop yourself and your employees. Improving your skills helps improve your chances of business success.

Consider whether you and your team have the skills you need to be able to perform the tasks required for the day-to-day running of your business. In this blog you will learn about:

  • Why learning and developing your knowledge is so important in today’s fast-paced world
  • The skills and knowledge you need to thrive and compete in today’s market
  • Why distance learning suits executives as a way to fit in training around lifestyle and work
  • How a HND or HNC is a great base to build your career on
  • Just some examples of the courses available to you from Brighton School of Business and Management (BSBM)

Do you have a training budget remaining for the year? Get the most value from it by booking onto one of our courses between now and 12th December, and you will get 10% off our study fees.  

Why is it so important to invest in learning and development?

Research done through Harvard Business Review found that the main way for employees to be productive and achieve goals is for employers to provide them with opportunities for continuous learning. This helps employees continue to improve their skills and be more flexible and adaptable, as changes related to technology and other workplace matters can arise quickly. When continuous learning is supported employees feel valued, helping boost employee engagement and retention.

According to Deloitte, there are three main factors that seem to be driving forces in the changes occurring in learning and development. Due to globalisation and the shrinking world, businesses have to compete with other organisations around the world, no longer just in their community or country. Companies need to use technology to help employees continuously learn and develop skills so that the company can stay competitive in the marketplace.

“Organisations are more competitive, agile, and engaged when knowledge is constantly and freely shared”. US Association for Talent Development

Mobile devices have made learning available to even more people and almost anywhere as employees can find courses on almost any topic on a mobile device.

Employees are also finding that learning can help them advance their careers. There are more requests from Millennials and Generation Z employees to have learning opportunities on a variety of topics in an easily accessible manner like an online learning environment.

These forces disrupt the culture of learning in the organisation, requiring leaders to continuously learn about and adapt to changes. Leaders who don’t, fall behind and miss the benefits of highly developed learning and development programmes.

What skills do employees need to have to thrive in today’s business world?

Business skills are important at whichever level you work at within an organisation: from working in a mailroom to running the company, good skills make you attractive to fellow-workers and employers.

There was a time when people stayed in their jobs for many years before receiving a promotion. Business moves at a much quicker pace today, and employees expect to be appreciated and move up in their companies. So, employers look for workers who can do the job today with an eye toward what they might do in the near future

Over half of new businesses fail mainly because the entrepreneur is unable to translate their passion into practical business skills. Success demands more than hard work, resilience, and expertise in your field. In order to succeed, you need to understand and become more proficient in a set of fundamental business skills. Here are five of the top business skills you need:

  1. Leadership Skills

Leadership is a process of getting things done via people. Leadership, a critical management skill, is the ability to motivate a group of people toward a common goal. Leadership is also the ability to take charge, assemble, mobilise, and motivate teams. The key is to know how to forge long-term relationships with prospects, customers, suppliers, employees, and investors.

  1. Communication Skills

Communication is an important part of life and is one that is often taken for granted. When you think about it, almost everything you do requires improved communications. To be effective in business, you have to communicate well. When you hire a new employee, good communication skills help you select the right person. When you communicate with your various stakeholders, you need to be clear about your expectations and to be sensitive when dealing with problems.  You need to be able to run productive meetings, confidently motivate team members to achieve targets, deftly resolve conflicts between staff or suppliers and skilfully appease the needs of customers or company directors.

“You can have brilliant ideas, but if you can’t get them across, your ideas won’t get you anywhere”. Lee Iacocca

  1. Strategic Planning

Strategic planning is a very important business activity. Strategic planning is a process of defining your company’s strategy or direction and making decisions on allocations of resources of capital and people. The key is to know how to project your company’s future performance, within a three-to-five year framework or more, supported by your well-defined business plan.

  1. Team Building

Team-building and teamwork skills are essential for an entrepreneur in today’s workplace. People working at their potential in teams generate better solutions and more productivity than individual members working independently. The key is to know how to build teams of employees, partners, advisors, and investors that will help you take your business to the next level.

  1. Project planning and executing

Running a business involves managing an ongoing series of projects that overlay each other. It can be a juggling act that requires skill and discipline to do right. A foundation of time and project management skills will hold you strong and steady when all the balls need to be kept in the air.

As well as hard skills, employers seek business candidates who have high levels of emotional intelligence, people who are great communicators, and people who can manage their time and organise their workflow. Passion and determination can go a long way, and those skills are proven over time. An entrepreneurial spirit, a community-oriented mindset, and a tendency toward innovation can also benefit those seeking jobs in business.

Problem-solving is another major soft skill to cultivate. When unexpected wrenches are thrown into the gears, a good problem solver will stay calm and think critically to get things moving again. Problem solvers are high-value to employers. Similarly, confidence is a soft skill that’s of high value, but not false confidence or a haughty attitude that’s undeserved. Confidence must be backed up with real knowledge, skill, and ability.

Top up your skills through distance learning

Distance learning programmes provide management training that offers the convenience of being able to study at home in front of the computer.  A key feature of online distance learning is that the students are at the centre of the learning process and they have to take a more proactive role.

“The question is no longer IF the internet can transform learning in powerful ways.” The Web-Based Education Commission

Recent research from the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) has shown that Managers taking online courses are developing additional skills – such as discipline, focus, accountability and troubleshooting – precisely because this method of learning requires them to be more organised and manage their own study time.

The pace of learning is also flexible, which can be a tempting option if you are a busy Business Manager juggling responsibilities at work and home while struggling to find time for professional training. Distance learning courses from the Brighton School of Business and Management offer the practical advantages of allowing you to gain knowledge when you want it and where you want it.

Management and leadership skills are the key to the success of an organisation. Senior leaders are critical to the success of the organisation through the culture they create and the expectation they set of others. They require exceptional communication skills and the ability to drive performance through their management team, empowering others whilst maintaining high levels of accountability.

Many Directors and Senior Managers have undertaken a Chartered Management Institute (CMI) Level 7 or 8 Leadership or Management qualification to gain the resulting professional recognition.  The CMI reports that according to the Managers they spoke to, undertaking qualifications helped to improve employee morale and engagement.

If you are just starting out in your career, a distance learning HNC or HND is a great basis to build your career on.  Check out last week’s blog to find out more about why this is such a good choice for young people.

Great distance learning leadership and management training from BSBM

BSBM has built a reputation for delivering high quality content, support and guidance, which results in high pass rates, as well as contributing to successful career progression for Students.

“The quality and quantity of material for each module is excellent and enables me to focus on each new subject effectively. I chose the course as it lends itself very well to tying each module and assignment to my “day job” and delivering benefits to the company I work for as well as delivering personal benefit to me.” CMI Diploma in Strategic Management and Leadership Level 7 Student

The key benefits of studying for your business qualification with BSBM via distance learning include:

  • Flexibility in studying – our type of training fits in well with the unplanned demands of working life
  • Our high level of support – where we offer individual support from a Tutor and review a Student’s progress continually. Students can communicate with their Tutor directly via Skype and email
  • An affordable option for training – distance learning is a very cost-effective option for many businesses

The BSBM website has full details of all your business and management courses, and if you book before 12 December 2018, you will get 10% off the full cost of study.

  • For those looking for skills in specialist business areas, or wish to move to middle management, we provide a variety of CMI business courses

Whatever your level in business, we have the distance learning solution for you.

Affordable, flexible, comprehensive, fully supported, distance learning with BSBM is the perfect way that aspirational and seasoned Professionals can build their skill base and enhance their career progression, without having to pay for it with too much time or money.

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