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The MBA Essentials for Lawyers course introduces lawyers to seven, easy-to-follow steps which have been derived from the key methodologies taught on MBA courses by the world’s leading business schools. These steps have been designed to help lawyers to quickly understand any client’s business, industry and market.
The course can be delivered through face-to-face training, webinars and online resources.
Equipping lawyers with this step-by-step guide to analysing a client will strengthen their commercial awareness, fill any gaps in their business knowledge and allow them to:
This legally focused, award winning, bite-sized MBA course is run on a regular basis by some of the largest law firms and investment banks in the world. The course has also been run for in-house counsel within the following businesses: BP, Nestle, Investec, Warner Bros, Morgan Stanley, BAE Systems, BT, UBS, Friends Life, Chevron, ING Bank, Goldman Sachs International, Verizon Business, The Bank of England, London Stock Exchange, Swiss Re, Yahoo, Thompson Reuters, NBC Universal, Barclays Corporate, Associated British Foods, AEG Europe, WPP Group, The Wellcome Trust and BskyB.
The course presenter, Rupert Vernalls, is a former lawyer who headed up Osborne Clarke’s commercial law practice in Silicon Valley. Rupert has also worked as in-house IP counsel for Vodafone and has been named in the Legal 500 as an experienced technology lawyer. Since completing his own MBA, Rupert has lectured at the US Department of Commerce, worked as a Designated Assistant for Course Planning with Harvard Business Online and as a Module Advisor on the Bath MBA. Rupert has collaborated with leading lawyers and eminent academics to develop this ground breaking, bite-sized MBA course.
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Click on the MBA modules below for more details
How to identify the critical factors for success within any industry.
How to select and execute the best strategies for your business.
How to interpret and respond to change based upon your unique strengths.
In-House Counsel from the following businesses have benefitted from our Bite-Sized MBA course
Attendees from the following businesses have benefitted from our bite-sized MBA course: BP, Nestle, Investec, Warner Bros, Morgan Stanley, BAE Systems, Rolls-Royce, RBS, BT, Lloyds TSB, UBS, Friends Life, Chevron, ING Bank, Goldman Sachs International, Verizon Business, The Bank of England, London Stock Exchange, Swiss Re, Yahoo, Thompson Reuters, NBC Universal, Barclays Corporate, Associated British Foods, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, AEG Europe, WPP Group, The Wellcome Trust, Deloitte LLP, BskyB.
“The course is very thought provoking and absorbing. It strikes the perfect balance between theory and practical examples. The worksheets are also an incredibly useful resource that have helped us to analyse not only our own business but also the businesses of our clients. This has been particularly useful in helping us develop more bespoke marketing materials which are finely tuned to our target clients’ businesses.” Marketing Director, FTSE 250 Company
“The concepts have been really useful in our organisation in terms of questioning our short term and long term goals and helped us to understand which projects to pursue and which to abort. It has really helped us to structure our thoughts on various aspects of our strategy in a much more logical manner. It definitely makes me approach my work with a different outlook.” Commercial Manager, Fast Track Technology Company
“Probably the best course that I have been on in terms of offering immediate, wide range benefits in my job. It has made the complex understandable and encouraged me to figure out how our strengths are aligned with services we offer. All aspects have a relevance to my day to day work. I will recommend to other members within my department.” Project Manager, SME
“Great to have a framework to pin our efforts to - we are half-way through a strategic service portfolio review and it provides a reminder to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. The Strategy Canvas is something that I want to look at introducing within our organisation to link our market assessment to strategy. Nice and simple way of presenting the information. I am also particularly interested in developing our sweet spot of opportunity.” Global Program Manager, FTSE 100 Company
“Very relevant both personally and organisationally. It will help in strategic planning and service design. Lots of opportunities within our organisation to apply these concepts. I loved the methodology. The 7 step approach is easy to follow and take other teams through in terms of developing their service strategies.” Senior Account Manager, Leading Professional Services Firm
“This course has broadened our strategic thinking. We’re using the models to think about our market position relative to our competitors. It has also helped us to discover ways of integrating the various departments in the business so that they can work together more closely and exploit each other’s strengths.” Head of HR, FTSE 100 company
“All of it was relevant and helped me to understand what goes on behind the strategy of our group and how we can be a more profitable company. It helps to contextualise those changes in the market that should influence our strategy. It has also got us thinking about how we can better organise the various aspects of our business so that they are aligned to the overall strategy of the business.” Business Development Manager, AIM listed company
“Really stimulating and motivating. It has encouraged me to ask more relevant questions and think more about the industry that I work in. I now have a much better understanding of strategic business analysis and how to be more solution focussed. The worksheets have also helped me to think about why things are done in a certain way, how they fit within the bigger picture, how they can be done differently.” Senior Engineer, FTSE 100 company
Helped me to understand how the whole analytical process fits together and how to assess the business’s strengths in order to determine the appropriate strategy. Contains many factors you wouldn’t normally think to consider. It is also useful in understanding the focus and position of my staff in the business. I will go back and review my business’s structure and strategy and consider how I can better utilise our limited resources to support the business. Founder and MD, SME
“A real eye opener that has helped us to identify what the key assets within our business are and how we can use them to develop a competitive advantage. On a personal level it has helped me to adapt my communication within the workplace so that I can speak to our board using terminology that they are familiar with and get a better understanding of how my current project fits into the overall strategy.” Lead Engineer, NASDAQ listed company
“I found it fascinating. The course provided us with a real grasp of the core principles taught on an MBA and how to apply them. It has given me a completely new way of looking at our business and what the drivers of strategies are. It has also helped me understand our clients’ businesses so that I can have more engaging conversations with those clients and ask them more intelligent questions. I am very much in favour of the course being rolled out more widely within our firm.” Partner Leading City law firm
Our Bite-Sized MBA is also run as part of the UK’s Venturefest programme: http://news.sciencecitybristol.com/an-mba-in-a-day-at-venturefest-bristol-2013/ - A quote from a recent attendee: “Simply Brilliant! As a recent start-up company I was keen to learn more about business strategy and this course gave me all of the key elements, delivered in an easily digestible form. The time just flies by and the whole course is very thought provoking.” (Nigel Silman, MD, Wilton Biotechnologies Ltd)
“I came to Venturefest primarily for Rupert’s Bite-Sized MBA and it was well worth the investment in time and travel. Now have the tools to take away and apply to my company.” Jeff Francis, MD, Beta Omega Ltd (The materials taught on these face-to-face courses are identical to those covered in the online videos and worksheets. You can gain access to all this online content for just £99.)
The 7 steps of Developing Strategy
Before it is possible to develop the best strategies for a business, we must understand the key factors that determine profitability within its industry. Therefore, carrying out an industry analysis is always the first step we go through when developing the strategy for any business. In Videos 1.2 - 1.6 (of Module 1) you learn how to very quickly and easily analyse any industry. This is Step 1.
Every business must be able to answer the fundamental question “Why are our customers buying from us and not from our competitors?” It must be doing something recognised as being in some way unique or superior to the competition, which is important to its target customers. This can be diagrammatically represented by drawing a Strategy Canvas. In Video 2.4 (of Module 2) you will learn how to draw a Strategy Canvas for your business. This is Step 2.
There exists a list of predefined strategies (assembled by leading academics) that have been designed to improve profitability. These can be found at Exercise 2 Worksheet 2. The strategies that are most appropriate for a business should be governed both by it understanding of its industry forces (revealed at Step 1) and by its unique identity (revealed at Step 2). In Video 2.5 (of Module 2) you will learn how to select strategies from the predefined lists. This is Step 3.
It is only having selected those strategies that are best for a business (at Step 3) that we can identify the key assets that will need to be in place in order to execute those strategies. This can be expressed graphically by drawing a Key Asset Map. In Videos 2.6 and 2.7 (of Module 2) you will not only learn how you can draw a Key Asset Map for your business but also how you can put those key assets in place through the use of Functional Strategies. This is Step 4.
If the world never changed a business could continue to pursue exactly the same set of strategies (as defined in Steps 1 - 4) indefinitely. However, the world does change and therefore a business cannot rely on past success to carry it into the future forever. Consequently, a business needs to understand how to interpret change from a strategic perspective. This can be achieved by using the Future 5 Forces Model and the Future Brand Identity Model. Videos 3.1 - 3.4 (of Module 3) will help you learn how to use these models. This is Step 5.
Having understood how to interpret change (at Step 5), Step 6 encourages the business to ask itself how it can respond to that change in a manner that is superior to the competition based upon its unique set of strengths. Because no two businesses are alike, no two businesses should respond in the same way to a change within its market. This is referred to as the Resource Based View of Change. In Video 3.5 (of Module 3) your will learn how to respond to change. This is Step 6.
To succeed in the long term a business must be able to create an inner urge for progress and identify new markets where it can exploit its existing set of strengths. To achieve this it should pursue those opportunities that allow it to reveal and enhance its existing capabilities. This can be revealed through the use of a framework entitled the Sweet Spot of Opportunity. In Video 3.6 (of Module 3) you will learn how to discover where your Sweet Spot of Opportunity lies. This is Step 7.
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