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How to derive maximum benefit from the diploma course

What do we mean by business laws in the context of this course?
Tremendous opportunity and significant career benefits lie ahead for any student, professional, manager or a businessman who specializes in one or more aspects of business laws. By the expression ‘business laws’, we are referring to the entire sphere of statutes, regulations or contracts that are relevant and essential for conducting a business. The context of business laws is relatively wider and more comprehensive than the expression corporate or company law. In reality, entrepreneurs, corporate lawyers, business consultants and litigators encounter a variety of business law situations which may not necessarily be restricted to the Companies Act.

In general, developing broader skillsets on a variety of business laws is preferable when you start out, although at a later stage in future you may choose to specialize later on a narrower area. 

How to use the course for maximum benefit
This is an introductory chapter explaining how you can derive best results from the course. For maximizing your learning, please follow the design of the course (uploaded separately in this module) as meticulously as possible. Please reach out to us if you have difficulty in observing any component of the design.

Pursuing this course is not just a CV building exercise. Here’s why.
How can you use this course to proceed towards your career? Of course, recognition (in the form of a diploma or certificate) from a university is relevant, but that is an inferior use of the course. It is insufficient for your skill development, for getting jobs, consultancy work, interviews or in writing powerful statements of purpose (if you wish to pursue higher studies).
While participating in the course, it is suggested that you aspire towards developing real-life skills which are useful for clients. After reading each module, try to identify:
  1. What is the specific need for inputs or services around the relevant area covered by the module in the real world?
  2. On which aspects is the current ecosystem providing the relevant services?
  3. On which aspects is it failing to provide the necessary input or service? Why is this failure occurring?
  4. Is there scope for you to fill that need for your own business, help somebody around that or create your own consultancy around that need? What economic, systemic or market-related obstacles are needed to be overcome?
  5. Does this inspire you? Which personal obstacles do you think you need to overcome to effectively benefit from the opportunity that has emerged?
Feel free to refer to businessmen, lawyers, industry experts or media reports in this process, to develop your views.

The skills you acquire are useful for you only if you have the capability to use them. The course has an in-built engagement framework. At the end of every module, there is an exercise which encourages and invites you to apply the lessons you have learnt in the course in the context of your own business or professional life. While performing the engagement exercises as per the design, you are likely to dwell in or deal with the following aspects.
  1. Networking and related communication - The assignments at the end of each module require you to get in touch with others in your network or to expand your network. You will have the opportunity to seek help from mentors too. To make the best of it, pay attention to how you communicate, from sending requests to add others to your network, personal messaging, email or phone communications. Let us know if you struggle somewhere on the Exclusive Facebook Group. Where possible, we will try to share templates or provide feedback on your request.
  2. Writing and sharing – What you learn out of your study, research and interaction with relevant stakeholders in course of performing the exercises is likely to leave you with a unique experience which others can benefit from. From time to time you will be asked to write about your experience and share it in your professional network (or with the course administration). This will give you an opportunity to create valuable writing which is relevant for an audience, which is the key to building authority as a professional or an entrepreneur. Internationally, there are several experts and professionals who have used blogs to effectively create a personal brand and generate business. Experiences of some very successful bloggers are available here.
  3. Getting past any other barriers that may prevent you from applying the skills – When faced in a real situation, we are often faced with barriers that prevent us from applying the skills we have learnt. For example, lack of prior experience, under-confidence, uncertainty and incomplete research are some of the most common ones. If you perform the exercises diligently, you will develop some level of proficiency in moving beyond these barriers.
How to use this course to generate income
If you are a business consultant, you can use skills acquired from any module of the course to perform services for clients and charge money for such services. Note that having one’s own clients is not as difficult as it is perceived. In fact, it is possible to build a network and have paying clients even as a student. For reference, you can read “How Ramanuj Mukherjee, a founder of iPleaders, found his first client for consulting work (as a student) here.”

It is not possible for the course to predict all possible situations that can arise and provide answers in anticipation of such situations, but it can be used as a toolbox that enables you to get started on acquiring more advanced skillsets so that you can build further expertise.

Lawyers, business consultants, accountants and company secretaries can use the course in the following ways for their clients:

Inputs on business strategy – This could refer to various kinds of advisory work, consultancy, legal inputs or other billable work pertaining to the business strategy of the client. For example, which is the best form of business structure for a specific venture, what forms of incentives should employees be given, how should a joint venture relationship be planned, etc. Keep an eye out for which content you can use for providing such strategic inputs.

Working professionals can use these skills to provide high-level inputs to the management team or wherever needed in the course of their daily work, such as while sub-contracting work, entering into everyday contracts which do not require direct intervention of the legal team, etc.

Negotiation and Drafting – Lawyers can provide inputs on how business agreements are drafted and in negotiation of the documents. Chartered accountants and company secretaries are also known to provide inputs on drafting, although they may not modify drafts themselves. Negotiation, on the other hand, can be undertaken by any advisor. Discussions of the terms and objectives of contractual documents, sample clauses and templates must be viewed from this perspective.

Compliance work – Compliance work refers to preparing resolutions, reports and other paperwork such as maintaining records and registers and filing certain documents with statutory authorities. Depending on the nature of the documents, they may be prepared by accountants, secretaries or lawyers. Statutory or regulatory provisions connected to compliance have been mentioned in relevant places. Wherever required, formats for this purpose have also been provided.
Litigators can refer to the chapter (provided later) on how to use business law skills to progress in their career.
Government officers may refer to this article.

How to use this course in job interviews, statements of purpose (SOPs) and covering letters
Whether you are sitting for a job interview, writing a statement of purpose, your CV or a covering letter, it is important for you to demonstrate what you have learnt. Don’t just say that you pursued a course on [x] from NUJS and expect a recruiter to simply count on that. There are plenty of courses in the market which look good on your CV, but recruiters also recognize the trend of piling up degrees and creating good-looking CVs without corresponding increase in relevant skillsets.

We suggest that you select at least any 3 issues from the course modules, and discuss what you learnt, in this format:
I learnt about [business structuring] in diploma course conducted by NUJS, where I studied about:
[How to negotiate co-founder agreements for a new business venture and select optimal business structures (e.g. company or LLP) depending on the nature of the venture. I learnt that for any businesses which are scaling and need to raise investment or foreign loans, company is the optimal structure because venture capitalists prefer to invest in a company. Further, under Indian law, foreign investors cannot invest in an Indian business without regulatory approvals, unless it is structured as a company. Similarly the business cannot take foreign loans, which can be raised at a fraction of the cost of Indian loans, unless it is structured as a company].

You can insert a pause for the recruiter to ask you further questions. If nothing is asked you can continue explaining slowly, observing the interviewer’s reaction and ensuring that he or she is able to grasp what you are saying. Another detailed explanation, which pertains to another topic is below:

I learnt about [investment laws] in diploma course conducted by NUJS, where I studied about:
[How shareholders agreements are negotiated and the different rights investors have in a company to protect their interest – e.g. tag along rights, affirmative voting rights, options, etc. I read about foreign exchange controls on the kinds of rights investors can take into a company and a few case studies such as that of Redbus, where the founders owned very little of the company at the time of exit due to a disadvantageous anti-dilution ratchet clause].

Don’t worry if this sounds like Greek to you, you will learn about this in a later module.

Did you notice how the above discussion sounds unique?
We also encourage you to talk about your experience in performing any of the exercises or any subsequent developments that you know about, as it will be a direct example of your problem solving abilities. For example, you could mention in the above context that [several Indian technology startups such as Housing.com have raised a lot of investment really fast, which has resulted in founder stakes being diluted below 10 percent. This can potentially create significant friction between founders and investors, as founders may not consider themselves to have enough incentive to grow the business].

It does not matter whether you encountered problems that you were unable to solve in the problems of performing the exercises. Appropriate identification of problems itself indicates an inspiring level of maturity which makes recruiters seek out the candidate.

  1. If you are writing a cover letter for an internship or job, specifically mention your learning on at least one area from the course which may be relevant to the interviewer.
  2. Don’t forget to update your LinkedIn profile where you specify what you learnt from the course and mention relevant links of your work.  
Useful resources
How to write good blog posts:
How to build a strong LinkedIn profile and sharing tips: We encourage you to use LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter for networking and sharing. While most users are familiar with Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter are harder to use. Refer to the following links to get a hang of how to build your LinkedIn profile:

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