Deciding which commercial awareness topics to research and potentially discuss at interviews and networking events can be difficult, as there are so many to choose from! There is no minimum or maximum number of commercial topics to know; however, if you are struggling to find time to research all of your chosen topics, narrowing your focus can be a great way to feel prepared to discuss commercial issues while still developing your general commercial awareness skills in the time you have available.
If you are feeling spoilt for choice but have limited time and are unsure about which topics to spend your time researching, hopefully these tips can help you to narrow down your list!
Pick stories that you are genuinely interested in
If you hope to use your commercial knowledge in an interview or networking situation, being passionate about what you are discussing can help you talk about a topic much more naturally. When you are examining the news, note the stories that catch your eye and that you want to know more about!
Knowing the facts of a topic is a great start but being able to have your own thoughts and ideas about something will make conversations much easier. In many situations you will have the freedom to introduce the topic you would like to talk about and that will give you the perfect chance to show your honest enthusiasm and understanding of certain commercial issues.
Don’t panic over needing to remember every detail
Sometimes there are topics that you might find interesting but are quite complicated and develop frequently. Having a lot of information to remember doesn’t mean that you can’t have a great discussion about it, even if you don’t think you can remember every last detail.
Discussing commercial awareness topics is often a two-way conversation and listening to somebody else’s views on how they interpreted a certain aspect is a great way to consider details that you may have missed in your own research. On the other hand, even if you are presenting on a topic or using it to answer an interview question, it is much better to focus on the parts that you think are most important than trying to cover everything in a limited amount of time.
Think outside the box when you are researching
When you decide on a topic and start to look for further information, varying your sources to see the bigger picture can be helpful. It can also be a great way to weigh up the various elements of a topic in order to decide whether it is something you’d like to talk about. At this early stage, it can be difficult to know how a topic relates to the law or what the wider implications might be, especially if the issues it deals with are brand new.
If there are key individuals or businesses involved, their websites or social media accounts are great resources for finding statements and updates straight from the parties themselves. These sites also provide information that you wouldn’t find though traditional news sources. Searching for blogs and articles published by law firms can also help you to see a topic in a legal context, develop your understanding and discover other useful topics to look for in future!