That external environment consists of competition, the economy, information technology, legal and political forces, and social responsibility. All of these factors have an impact on the daily operations of the business. 7
As you saw in the previous figure, management and employees are in the same segment of the circle. This is because management involves coordinating employees’ actions to achieve the firm’s goals, organizing people to work efficiently, and motivating them to achieve the business’s goals. Management is also concerned with acquiring, developing, and using resources (including people) effectively and efficiently. Managers plan, organize, staff, and control the tasks required to carry out the work of the company. These responsibilities are carried out by management in both for profit and nonprofit organizations. 8
Marketing is a very important function in business and is focused on satisfying customers. Marketing includes all the activities designed to provide goods and services that satisfy consumers’ needs and wants. Marketers gather information and conduct research to determine what customers want. Using information gathered from marketing research, marketers plan and develop products and make decisions about how much to charge for their products and when and where to make them available. They also analyze the marketing environment to see if products need to be modified. Marketers use promotion—advertising, personal selling, sales promotion (coupons, games, sweepstakes, movie tie-ins), and publicity—to communicate the benefits and advantages of their products to consumers and increase sales. 9
Although management and marketing have to deal with financial considerations, it is the primary responsibility of the owners to provide financial resources for the operation of the business. Finance refers to all activities concerned with obtaining money and using it effectively. People who work as accountants, stockbrokers, investment advisors, or bankers are all part of the financial world. Owners sometimes have to borrow money to get started or attract additional owners who become partners or stockholders. 10
We have seen the various functions and aspects of business. It is important to ask why we study business. Studying business can help you develop skills and acquire knowledge to prepare for your future career, regardless of whether you plan to work for a multinational Fortune 500 firm , start your own business, work for a government agency, or manage or volunteer at a nonprofit organization. The field of business offers a variety of challenging and interesting opportunities for your careers throughout the world, such as marketing, human resources management, information technology, finance, production and operations, wholesaling and retailing, and many more. Studying business can also help you better understand the many business activities that are necessary to provide satisfying goods and services—and that these activities carry a price tag.