Fundamentals of Business

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Stephen Skripak, Virginia Tech

Pub Date: 2016

ISBN 13: 978-0-9979201-0-9

Publisher: Virginia Tech Libraries

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Reviewed by Ehsan Salek, Professor of Business, Virginia Wesleyan College, on 2/9/2017.

The text has an extensive coverage and actually has several chapters one doesn't normally find in an introductory textbook on business. If this was a … read more

 

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Reviewed by Thomas Goodwin, Part-time Instructor, Miami University, on 6/21/2017.

This text does a good job of introducing key functions of an organization (Marketing, HR, Accounting/Finance) as well as core principles such as … read more

 

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Reviewed by Ann Strunk, Adjunct Instructor, Klamath Community College, on 6/21/2017.

The text covers all the typical topics for introductory business course. The Chapter 15: Hospitality and Tourism is relevant to the increasing … read more

 

Table of Contents

Teamwork in Business............................. 1
Learning Objectives...................................... 1
The Team with the RAZR’s Edge ..................... 2
The Team and the Organization ...................... 4
Why Teamwork Works ............................... 10
The Team and Its Members ........................ 13
Key Take-Aways ................. 21

Chapter 1 .................................................... 23
The Foundations of Business .......................... 23
Learning Objectives .................................... 23
Why Is Apple Successful? ................................ 24
Introduction .................................................... 25
Getting Down to Business .................................. 27
Functional Areas of Business .................................. 29
External Forces that Influence Business Activities ......... 30
Key Take-Aways ................................................... 32

Chapter 2 ................................................. 33
Economics and Business .................................. 33
Learning Objectives ......................................... 33
What is Economics? ........................................... 34
Perfect Competition and Supply and Demand .................... 39
Monopolistic Competition, Oligopoly, and Monopoly ................ 43
Measuring the Health of the Economy ........................... 45
Government’s Role in Managing the Economy ................ 51
Key Take-Aways .................................... 53

Chapter 3 .......................................................... 56
Ethics and Social Responsibility ..................... 56
Learning Objectives ............................................ 56
Introduction .......................................................... 57
What is Business Ethics? ...................................... 59
Identifying Ethical Issues and Dilemmas .................... 60
Corporate Social Responsibility ................................. 65
Ethical Organizations ............................................ 71
The Individual Approach to Ethics ......................... 72
Key Take-Aways ................................... 79

Chapter 4 ..................................................... 81
Business in a Global Environment ....................... 81
Learning Objectives .......................................... 81
The Globalization of Business ............................... 82
Opportunities in International Business ......................... 87
The Global Business Environment .......................... 94
Case Study: Hospitality & Tourism ...................... 101
Trade Controls ....................................... 102
Reducing International Trade Barriers ....................... 105
Key Takeaways ......................................... 111

Chapter 5 ............................................ 115
Forms of Business Ownership ................................ 115
Learning Objectives ....................................... 115
The Ice Cream Men ............................. 116
Factors to Consider .......................... 117
Mergers and Acquisitions ................................ 126
Key Take-Aways .................................................. 130

Chapter 6 .......................................................... 132
Entrepreneurship: Starting a Business ......................... 132
Learning Objectives ............................................ 132
Cover Story: Build a Better “Baby” and They Will Come ... 133
The Nature of Entrepreneurship ..................... 135
The Importance of Small Business to the U.S. Economy .. 140
What Industries Are Small Businesses In? .......... 143
Advantages and Disadvantages of Business Ownership ... 147
Starting a Business .................................... 149
Why Some Businesses Fail and Where to Get Help ........ 154
Key Take-Aways ...................................... 158

Chapter 7 ............................................. 159
Management and Leadership .................. 159
Learning Objectives .................................. 159
Noteworthy Management ............................. 160
What Do Managers Do? ................. 161
Planning ...................................... 162
Leading .................................. 169
Controlling ........................... 172
Managerial Skills ......................... 175
Applying Your Skills at Notes-4-You ...... 180
Key Take-Aways ...................... 181

Chapter 8 ............................................. 184
Structuring Organizations ......................... 184
Learning Objectives ......................... 184
Organizing ................................... 185
Organizational Structure: How Companies Get Job Done .. 187
Key Take-Aways ............................ 198

Chapter 9 ..................................... 200
Operations Management ....................... 200
Learning Objectives .............................. 200
The Challenge: Producing Quality Jetboards ........... 201
Operations Management in Manufacturing ............. 202
Managing the Production Process in Manufacturing Company ... 208
Graphical Tools: Gantt and PERT Charts ................. 210
The Technology of Goods Production ............. 213
Operations Management for Service Providers ........ 215
Producing for Quality ...................... 224
Key Take-Aways ........................... 229

Chapter 10 ..................................... 231
Motivating Employees ......................... 231
Learning Objectives ......................... 231
Motivation ................................ 232
Hierarchy of Needs Theory ........................ 232
Two-Factor Theory ........................... 234
Expectancy Theory ........................... 236
Equity Theory ................................... 237
Key Take-Aways ............................................ 240

Chapter 11 ...................................... 241
Managing Human Resources ........................ 241
Learning Objectives ................................... 241
The Grounds of a Great Work Environment ................ 242
Human Resource Management ............. 243
Developing Employees ................. 251
What Makes a Great Place to Work? ............ 254
Compensation and Benefits ............... 260
Performance Appraisal .................... 263
Key Take-Aways ................. 269

Chapter 12 ..................... 272
Union/Management Issues ............... 272
Learning Objectives ......................... 272
Labor Unions ........................ 273
Key Take-Aways ............................... 281

Chapter 13 .................................. 283
Marketing: Providing Value to Customers .................. 283
Learning Objectives ...................... 283
A Robot with Attitude ....................... 284
What Is Marketing? .................. 285
The Marketing Mix ................................... 290
Developing a Product .......................... 291

About the Book

Virginia Tech Libraries and the Pamplin College of Business are pleased to announce publication of Fundamentals of Business, a full color, 440+ page free online textbook for Virginia Tech’s Foundations of Business course. This Virginia Tech course averages 14 sections with over 700 students in Fall semesters. The textbook is an open educational resource, and may be customized and redistributed non-commercially with attribution.

The book is the work of Prof. Stephen Skripak and his team of faculty colleagues from the Pamplin College of Business, Anastasia Cortes and Richard Parsons, open education librarian Anita Walz, graphic designers Brian Craig and Trevor Finney, and student peer reviewers Jonathan De Pena, Nina Lindsay, and Sachi Soni. Assistive Technologies consulted on the accessibility of the textbook.

The first openly licensed book of its kind created at Virginia Tech, the book is in direct response to two problems faced by Pamplin’s team of professors: a used edition of the previous textbook was priced as high as $215, and students were not engaged by the previous text.

Skripak and his colleagues started with an openly licensed textbook created in 2011 (licensed with a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license) which legally allows modification and non-commercial redistribution with attribution. The team significantly updated, redesigned, and contributed new content to create a learning resource that fits course learning objectives and reduces student textbook costs for this course to zero. Through a grant from the University Libraries, three students were hired to peer review drafts of the text. The team worked together through details of updating data, designing new figures, and ensuring web and print-on-demand ready layout. The resulting work, Fundamentals of Business, is licensed with a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.

In addition to faculty members’ ability to customize content and resolution of student affordability issues, the availability of an openly licensed text in common, editable file format bodes well for faculty at other institutions seeking to leverage academic freedom in support of student learning and affordability. The book is representative of a larger movement to empower faculty to freely adopt, adapt, and author a myriad of course types. We hope that many other institutions will take advantage of the opportunity to adopt, adapt or remix the book to fit their needs.

Fundamentals of Business is available in VTechWorks, Virginia Tech’s institutional repository, in PDF and editable Microsoft Word formats. Print-on-demand copies are available at the cost of manufacturing and shipping in color and black & white from Lulu Press. The book is also featured in the Open Textbook Library, OER Commons, and MERLOT II.

Credits for cover images: “Hong Kong Skyscrapers” by Estial, cropped and modified by Trevor Finney CC BY-SA 4.0; “Paris vue d’ensemble tour Eiffel” by Taxiarchos228, cropped and modified by Poke2001 and Trevor Finney CC BY 3.0; “London Bridge” by Skitterphoto, cropped and modified by Trevor Finney, Public Domain; “New York” by Mscamilaalmeida, cropped and modified by Trevor Finney, Public Domain.

About the Contributors

Author(s)

Stephen J. Skripak, Professor of Practice in Management at Pamplin College of Business, Virginia Tech. Former Associate Dean for Graduate Programs (2006-2014). Senior executive with 25 years of business leadership experience, including positions as General Manager and Chief Financial Officer with divisions of Fortune 500 companies. Background includes financial services, consumer packaged goods, apparel, and industrial companies, with emphasis in turnaround situations.