Exploring Business

Exploring Business
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Publisher: Saylor Foundation
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About the Book

The author's goals in writing Exploring Business Version 2.0 were simple: (1) introduce students to business in an exciting way and (2) provide faculty with a fully developed teaching package that allows them to do the former.

Toward those ends, the following features (beyond an extraordinarily clear book) make this an outstanding text:

1- Integrated (Optional) Nike Case Study: A Nike case study is available for instructors who wish to introduce students to business using an exciting and integrated case (updated each semester). Through an in-depth study of a real company, students learn about the functional areas of business and how these areas fit together. Studying a dynamic organization on a real-time basis allows students to discover the challenges that it faces, and exposes them to critical issues affecting the business, such as globalization, ethics and social responsibility, product innovation, diversity, supply chain management, and e-business.

Students learn about Nike by reading a case study broken down into 26 individual case notes, each linked to the appropriate section(s) of the text. Each provides a real-world example to help students master a particular topic. We also provide four award-winning videos featuring company executives discussing: the company’s history, its corporate responsibility challenges and initiatives, its commitment to product innovation, and its entrance into the soccer shoe market. Instructors can show the 15-minute videos in class or have students watch them online. Discussion questions written by the author aid classroom discussions on the video topics. Each chapter contains a multi-part question on one of the Nike case notes covered in the chapter. In addition, the test item file contains multiple-choice questions keyed to the Nike cases.

2- A Progressive (Optional) Business Plan: Having students develop a business plan in the course introduces students to the excitement and challenges of starting a business and helps them discover how the functional areas of business interact. This textbook package includes an optionalintegrated business plan project modeled after one refined by the author and her teaching team over the past ten years.

Students begin by reviewing a document describing the business plan project. In subsequent chapters, students complete another section of the 10-part business plan project. By the end of the course they're shown how to integrate each individual section into a final plan. Because the project is carefully coordinated with the presentation of course materials, students are able to apply what they're learning, as they're learning it, to the practical process of preparing a business plan. Preparing the financial section of the business plan can be difficult for students, so we furnish students with an Excel template that simplifies the process. They don't even need to be competent in Excel to use it; it's simple to use and we provide detailed instructions.

3- AACSB Emphasis: The text provides end-of-chapter questions, problems, and cases that ask students to do more than regurgitate information. Most require students to gather information, assess a situation, think about it critically, and reach a conclusion. Each chapter presents ten Questions and Problems as well as five cases on areas of skill and knowledge endorsed by AACSB: Learning on the Web, Career Opportunities, The Ethics Angle, Team-Building Skills, and The Global View. More than 70% of end-of-chapter items help students build skills in areas designated as critical by AACSB, including analytical skills, ethical awareness and reasoning abilities, multicultural understanding and globalization, use of information technology, and communications and team oriented skills. Each AACSB inspired exercise is identified by an AACSB tag and a note indicating the relevant skill area.

4- Author-Written Instructor Manual (IM): For the past eleven years, Karen Collins has been developing, coordinating and teaching (to over 3,500 students) an Introduction to Business course. Sections of the course have been taught by a mix of permanent faculty, graduate students, and adjuncts. Each semester, she oversees the course and guides approximately ten instructors as they teach; a task that's been made possible through the development and continuous improvement of extensive, clear, and highly coordinated teaching materials.

Karen believes that well-structured and easily understood teaching materials are vital to the success of the course, so she has personally written the Instructor Manual. it includes comprehensive teaching notes that integrate material from the chapter, material geared toward Nike, and material dedicated to the business plan project. Easy-to-use notes include teaching tips and ample in-class activities, and author-prepared solutions to end-of-chapter questions.

In Version 2.0 of Exploring Business Karen updated every single chapter. There are many new business examples, and several new topics have been addressed, including major revisions for Chapter 9's coverage of social media marketing, sustainability coverage in Chapter 2, the value of the Euro in Chapter 3, and exploration of the serial entrepreneur in Chapter 5.

This textbook has been used in classes at: College of Alameda, Columbia Basin College, Flagler College, Johnson County Community College, Pasadena City College, Penn State University, Renton Technical College, San Diego Mesa College, Sierra College, Yuba College.

Table of Contents

  • Chapter 1: The Foundations of Business
  • Chapter 2: Business Ethics and Social Responsibility
  • Chapter 3: Business in a Global Environment
  • Chapter 4: Selecting a Form of Business Ownership
  • Chapter 5: The Challenges of Starting a Business
  • Chapter 6: Managing for Business Success
  • Chapter 7: Recruiting, Motivating, and Keeping Quality Employees
  • Chapter 8: Teamwork and Communications
  • Chapter 9: Marketing: Providing Value to Customers
  • Chapter 10: Product Design and Development
  • Chapter 11: Operations Management in Manufacturing and Service Industries
  • Chapter 12: The Role of Accounting in Business
  • Chapter 13: Managing Financial Resources
  • Chapter 14: Personal Finances
  • Chapter 15: Managing Information and Technology
  • Chapter 16: The Legal and Regulatory Environment of Business