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    A business, company, enterprise, or firm is an organization involved in the extraction, production, manufacture, distribution and/or sale of raw materials, property, capital, goods or services to other businesses or consumers. Businesses may be privately owned, privately owned and publically traded (a corporation), state-owned, or not-for-profit. Privately owned businesses are usually found in capitalist economies, and are driven by free-market forces such as competition and a concern for maximizing owner or shareholder wealth. Even in a free-market economy, businesses must still answer to laws and government regulation, as well as, more recently, cries for increased corporate social responsibility.

    In school, business students concern themselves with learning about the efficient and effective operations of a business in order to become successful business managers upon graduation. A business education provides business students with the knowledge and skills to pursue a variety of rewarding careers in business, government and non-profit agencies. Business skills are also applicable in every day life, such as knowledge of personal finance, budgeting, leadership and interpersonal skills.

    The academic study of business introduces students to a broad range of business disciplines. Business students may generalize, or specialize with the hope of pursuing a career in one or more of the specific disciplines that fall under business. In many areas of specialization, such as finance and accounting, students may earn a professional designation as well.

    Academic disciplines in business include finance, accounting, marketing, strategy, human resource management, organizational behavior, entrepreneurship, information technology management, operations research, business law, and business philosophy and ethics. Most courses in business introduce students to established theories and principles in that discipline. Students learn to apply this knowledge to real world business situations through practice problems, case studies, and internship and co-op experience.

    BrainMass.com provides a variety of resources for business students looking to improve their grades, better understand course concepts, and learn new things. Our extensive solution bank offers pre-prepared solution guides for common and previously asked questions that business students may have. We also have a large number of academic experts online that can help with immediate questions relating to any discipline in business. These resources are supplemented by quizzes, PowerPoint presentations, and e-books to help with more complicated topics.

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    BrainMass Categories within Business

    Operations Research

    Solutions: 881

    Operations research, or management science, is the application of advanced analytical methods in mathematics to complex business decision-making problems. The study of operations research includes modeling and simulation for linear and nonlinear programs. In these programs, cost-minimization and profit-maximization functions are used to evaluate business production, transportation and other decisions.

    Business Law

    Solutions: 3,043

    Business law is the field of law that governs how businesses are organized and the rules regarding commercial transactions. It is also the field of law that looks at how laws and regulations impact capital markets, corporate governance, bankruptcy and restructuring, deal-making, taxation, and labor and employee relations. Our business law section looks at tort law, contract law and statutory regulations that affect corporations, partnerships and sole proprietorships. Solutions are also available relating to federal regulation such as the Sarbanes Oxley Act, as well as specific state laws.


    Solutions: 1,872

    E-Commerce is the study of business operations, strategy and marketing for online business, as opposed to the traditional Brick-and-Mortar business.


    Entrepreneurial Issues

    Solutions: 641

    The study of entrepreneurship gives students the chance to understand and analyze the skills and aspects important to starting a new business or managing new venture. One of the most important skills is preparing a business plan for potential investors.


    Solutions: 25,772

    Finance involves two related disciplines. The first examines the skills needed for students looking to enter into financial services. These skills include financial statement analysis, valuing securities, and building a portfolio. The second discipline looks at corporate finance. This discipline includes skills such as capital budgeting. The two disciplines in finance are closely related and frequently overlap.

    Strategy and Business Analysis

    Solutions: 11,195

    Business strategy teaches students about strategic planning, competitive advantage, management tools and techniques, and strategic positioning and fit. Models such as Porter's Five Forces and SWOT Analysis are frequently associated with business strategy. Management theories, such as Total Quality Management, arise frequently in the study of strategy as well.


    Human Resources Management

    Solutions: 5,883

    Human resource management integrates organizational behaviour; legal, ethical, and strategic considerations; and HRM management systems into the study of job design and job assignment, performance management, investment in human capital, and other human resource management issues and policies.


    Solutions: 24,502

    Accounting may refer to financial accounting, management accounting, or auditing. Accountants collect, record, aggregate and report financial information about the firm to external users (investors and creditors) and internal users (management) for making resource allocation decisions.

    Business Math

    Solutions: 1,685

    Business math is the application of calculus and statistical methods to business problems such as investment decisions, operating decisions, inventory management, and sales and marketing.