English   Danish

2011/2012  KAN-CBL_VFI  Financial Intelligence

English Title
Financial Intelligence

Course Information

Language English
Point 7,5 ECTS (225 SAT)
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Course Period Spring
Changes in course schedule may occur Friday 8.00-10.35, week 6, 20 Friday 8.00-9.40, week 7-13, 15-17,19 Friday 9.50-11.40, week 18
Time Table Please see course schedule at e-Campus
Study Board
Study Board for BSc og MSc in Business, Language and Culture
Course Coordinator
  • Eric Guthey - Department of Intercultural Communication and Management
Secretary Liselotte Skovsgaard Jessen - lsj.ikl@cbs.dk
Main Category of the Course
  • Management
Last updated on 29 maj 2012
Learning Objectives
At the end of the course, students should be able to:
  • display a firm grasp the basics of financial accounting, including such concepts and tools as income statements, balance sheets, annual reports, ratios, cash flows, return on investment, P&L, the time value of money, and working capital
  • display the ability to employ the financial accounting principles and practices covered in the course to analyze and to explain a variety of financial data, company documents, balance sheets, annual reports, and case studies
  • explain the important ways in which these and other key financial accounting principles and practices can be used to the benefit (and sometimes detriment) of organizations and the individuals who work in them
  • display the ability to work with the financial accounting principles and practices covered in the course to develop and present business cases for organizational projects and initiatives,
  • and to develop and evaluate alternative scenarios based on competing assumptions and financial data
  • discuss considerations of leadership and ethics relating to the financial accounting principles and practices covered in the course
  • evaluate, contrast, and synthesize the various concepts and theories introduced in the course,
  • and apply them to the analysis of a variety of case studies and situations that exemplify their relative usefulness for understanding the practice of leadership and management in a variety of contexts.
Financial Intelligence:
Assessment Home Assignment
Marking Scale 7-step scale
Censorship Internal examiners
Exam Period May/June
Aids Please, see the detailed regulations below
Duration 48 Hours
Forty-eight hour take home written examination based on all materials covered in the course.
Course Content

This course prepares students to participate in the leadership and management of organisations, networks and projects in a variety of contexts and international settings by cultivating their financial intelligence. Financial intelligence consists of the ability to understand what happens in companies and organizations from a financial perspective, and the ability to act on that information to contribute to organizational success. Students will gain a deeper understanding of financial accounting principles and techniques, and a deeper appreciation of how and why those principles and techniques are crucial for even non-financial managers to understand. Towards these ends the course will introduce students to the principles of financial intelligence, and further develop their understanding of such important tools and concepts as income statements, balance sheets, annual reports, ratios, cash flows, return on investment, P&Ls, and working capital. At every stage the course will put such concepts and tools into practice through the discussion and analysis of a variety of case studies and exercises that exemplify how important the numbers are to the way things work throughout organizations in various countries and regions around the world.

Teaching Methods
Class time will include lecture, case analysis, discussion, and exercises in which participants will explore the principles of financial intelligence and apply them to case studies and other organizational situations and dynamics.

Karen Berman, Joe Knight, John Case (2006) Financial Intelligence: A Manager's Guide to Knowing What the Numbers Really Mean, Harvard Business Press.


A collection of case materials available for purchase online via Harvard Business Publishing. These will include for example:

  • David B. Yoffie, Renee Kim (2010) Apple Inc. in 2010, Harvard Business School Case Study.
  • Craig Dunbar, Colette Southam (2009) London Youth Symphony, Ivey Business School Case Study.
  • Fernando Penalva (2005) Fantasia, SpA, IESE Business School Case Study.
  • Robert L. Simons, Antonio Davila (2000) Cafes Monte Bianco: Building a Profit Plan, Harvard Business School Case Study
  • Mitchell A. Petersen, Rashmi Singhal (2007) Vioxx: Too Risky for Merck? Kellogg Business School Case Study.
  • Graeme Rankine (2008) Cambridge Space Systems Plc, Thunderbird Business School Case Study.
  • Alan MacCormack, Kerry Herman, Sven Volpel (2002) Siemens ShareNet: Building a Knowledge Network, Harvard Business School Case Study.
  • Walter Kuemmerle, William J. Coughlin (2004) Ducati & Texas Pacific Group: A "Wild Ride" Leveraged Buyout, Harvard Business School Case Study
  • Josep Tapies, Francesca Toninato (2005) Milking Money out of Parmalat, IESE Business School Case Study.