Are you interested in acquiring practical business experience in strategic planning, management, and finance without enrolling in an MBA program? This course is for you!
You'll understand the significance of strategic planning and discover how external and internal environmental factors affect an organization. You'll learn about organizational structures, performance measurements, financial investment models, budgeting, ethics, workplace politics, and more! This course will provide you with in-depth knowledge of the business environment.
What you will learn
- Discover how external and internal environmental factors affect an organization
- Learn about various organizational structures
- Understand how to use leadership, motivation, and control for maximum impact
- Learn how successful organizations use performance measurements to stay on track
- Master the fundamentals of accounting
- Learn the basics of financial planning and budgeting methods
- Gain an understanding of the basic principles of business law
- Learn about ethics and organizational politics
How you will benefit
- Gain practical business experience that will help you in your current role without enrolling in an MBA program
- Use this course to determine if enrolling in an MBA program is the right next step for you
- Open the door to additional opportunities as you come to fully understand the business environment around you
How the course is taught
- Instructor-led or self-paced online course
- 6 Weeks or 3 Months access
- 24 course hours
In the first lesson, you'll learn the ins and outs of strategic planning. You'll find out why you need to define your business in terms of the customer and why you must have the right ingredients in place to meet customer demands. The lesson will discuss how environmental factors, such as technology and economics, shape your company. You'll also see how the internal environment determines how well your organization responds to opportunities and threats.
Memorize the phrase, "Plan your work and work your plan" because it has great applicability to strategic planning. You'll begin this lesson by learning about the elements you must use to effectively implement your strategic plan. You'll study vision statements, move on to purpose and mission statements, and discuss goals, objectives, strategies, policies, and procedures. Next, you'll focus on company culture and find out why planning is beneficial. Finally, you'll look at the major strategic choices that you can choose from, ranging from core business focus to insolvency.
Organizing is a critical topic that many companies struggle with. Once you have a good idea of how to develop and implement a strategic plan, you need to take the next step. This lesson will discuss how to organize resources so employees can perform job duties and relate to one another in the most effective way possible. You'll learn the purpose of organization and present several coordinating principles, including authority, power, and span of control. You'll also spend time exploring the staffing function and evaluate the elements—recruitment, selection, appraisal, and development—and study six different forms of organizational charts.
This lesson will discuss three key management principles: motivation, leadership, and control. Motivation and leadership, as compared to control, represent a more subtle side of business. While control focuses on concrete things such as analysis and procedures, motivation and leadership rely on less tangible factors. You'll begin the lesson by defining motivation, exploring four theories of motivation, and then moving into leadership. You'll learn about the types of leadership and see how delegation and empowerment differs. You'll finish up by investigating control and learning how to effectively use three different control processes.
This lesson and the next four to follow will help you increase your mastery of financial fundamentals. It's important that you increase your readiness to use financial information to identify and understand problems and opportunities, and also make decisions. The lesson will discuss the elements of the general ledger, explore a few key accounting terms, contrast accounting and bookkeeping, and investigate the different types of accounting. You'll learn about vital accounting concepts, such as the accounting equation, debits and credits, and the cost principle.
Now that you have the basics of accounting safely under your belt, it's time to start looking at how to apply financial information. You'll start off by reviewing two financial statements that you find at nearly every organization—the balance sheet and the income statement. Without these two documents, it's impossible to determine how a firm is performing. After you learn about the balance sheet and the income statement, you'll also learn how to account for inventories and understand about the significance of cash flow. The lesson will explain why sound cash management helps any company stay on the right path.
Cost is the price you pay to acquire, maintain, produce, or use materials or services. Since most firms account for their operations at cost, it's essential that you understand how costs are determined and used. This lesson will discuss the nature of discretionary, relevant, sunk, and variable costs, and many more. You'll also discover how managerial accounting differs from financial accounting.
The largest investment that many businesses make is in their land and buildings. Firms also make smaller, more frequent investment decisions for items such as equipment and fixture purchase and replacement. In this lesson, you'll learn about the different types of investment decision-making models, including average rate of return (ARR), payback period, discounted cash flow (DCF), net present value (NPV), and internal rate of return (IRR). You'll also examine the nuts and bolts of financial planning.
In the last lesson about financial matters, you'll wrap things up by examining budgeting. In order to be successful and make meaningful decisions about the future, you must look ahead. One way to do this is by preparing budgets. Accounting, as a major organizational function, supports a number of different types of budgets. You'll learn how to use the major budgets, including the department administration budget (also known as an expense budget), the production materials budget, the maintenance, repair and operating (MRO) budget, the capital budget, and zero-based budgeting.
In this lesson, you'll examine performance measurements as a way to keep track of progress. Studies reveal that if you don't measure a process, you can't properly manage it. The lesson will begin with a discussion on how human nature affects performance measurements. You'll learn about the attributes of effective performance measurements and see how traditional and progressive performance measurements differ.
The topic for this lesson is business law. The objective is to help you develop a good overview of business law and also learn about some important concepts, such as the principal-agency relationship and the basics of contracts. You'll begin by reading about the nature of laws, move on to explore the basics of a legal system, and then learn about the essence of commercial law.
Now that you have a basic understanding of business law, you'll take a look at the four most popular organizational forms: sole proprietorship, general partnership, limited partnership, and corporation. You'll spend some time learning about organizational politics, because wherever people work together, there will be politics. The lesson will go over "good" and "bad" politics and discuss how ethics relates to politics.
Tony Swaim has helped many clients, colleagues, and students reach their professional and personal goals. He has been an online instructor since 1998 and has taught at colleges and universities across the United States since 1981. His focus areas are project management, Six Sigma, and supply chain management. Tony manages a successful consulting firm, and his industry experience includes 20 years of supply chain management. He earned a Doctorate in Business Administration from Kennesaw State University and holds professional certifications in six disciplines, including the Project Management Professional (PMP)® certification from the Project Management Institute (PMI)® and Certified Six Sigma Black Belt (CSSBB)® from the American Society for Quality (ASQ)®.
Instructor Interaction: The instructor looks forward to interacting with learners in the online moderated discussion area to share their expertise and answer any questions you may have on the course content.
There are no prerequisites to take this course.
- This course can be taken on either a PC, Mac, or Chromebook.
- PC: Windows 8 or later.
- Mac: macOS 10.6 or later.
- Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
- Adobe Acrobat Reader.
- Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.
- Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.
Instructional Material Requirements:
The instructional materials required for this course are included in enrollment and will be available online.
Instructor-Led: A new session of each course begins each month. Please refer to the session start dates for scheduling.
Self-Paced: Your course begins immediately after you enroll.
Instructor-Led: Once a course session starts, two lessons will be released each week for the 6 week duration of your course. You will have access to all previously released lessons until the course ends. You will interact with the instructor through the online discussion area. There are no live sessions or online meetings with the instructor.
Self-Paced: You have 3 months of access to the course. After enrolling, you can learn and complete the course at your own pace, within the allotted access period. You will have the opportunity to interact with other students in the online discussion area.
Instructor-Led: The interactive discussion area for each lesson automatically closes two weeks after each lesson is released, so you're encouraged to complete each lesson within two weeks of its release. However, you will have access to all lessons from the time they are released until the course ends.
Self-Paced: There is no time limit to complete each lesson, other than completing all lessons within the allotted access period. Discussion areas for each lesson are open for the entire duration of the course.
Instructor-Led: Students enrolled in a six-week online class benefit from a one-time, 10-day extension for each course. No further extensions can be provided beyond these 10 days.
Self-Paced: Because this course is self-paced, no extensions will be granted after the start of your enrollment.