Strategy and the Business Environment

Understanding the business environment is an important concept for managers. It encapsulates many different influences and the difficulty is making sense of this complexity, which arises because many of the separate issues are interconnected. For example, think of a technological development such as IT, which changes the nature of work. This in turn, changes lifestyles which then alters consumer behaviour and purchasing patterns for many goods and services.

The macro-environment consists of broad environmental factors that impact to a greater or lesser degree on organisations. Having identified the key drivers of change from the broad data, possible scenarios can be drawn which will help the organisation to draw up its strategy.

The next layer is called an industry or sector. This is a group of organisations producing the same products or services. A useful framework for analysing an industry is Porter’s Five Forces Framework.

The layer adjacent to the organisation itself is its competitors and markets. Within most industries or sectors, there will be many different organisations with different characteristics and competing on different bases. The concept of strategic groups can help with the identification of both direct and indirect competitors. Competitor analysis allows companies to identify and understand its competitors. Furthermore, customers’ expectations are not all the same. They have a range of different requirements, which can be understood through the use of market segments and critical success factors.

The PESTEL framework is a useful tool to identify how future trends in the political, economic, social, technological, environmental and legal environments might affect organisations. Examples of such influences are shown below.

· Legal:

o Competition law

o Employment law

o Health and safety

o Product safety

· Political:

o Government stability

o Taxation policy

o Foreign trade regulations

o Social welfare policies


· Economic factors:

o Business cycles

o GNP trends

o Interest rates

o Money supply

o Inflation

o Unemployment

o Disposable income

· Sociocultural factors:

o Population demographics

o Income distribution

o Social mobility

o Lifestyle changes

o Attitudes to work and leisure

o Consumerism

o Levels of education

· Technological:

o Government spending on research

o Government and industry focus on technological effort

o New discoveries/developments

o Speed of technology transfer

o Rates of obsolescence

· Environmental:

o Environmental protection laws

o Waste disposal

o Energy consumption

Understanding how such factors might impact on and drive change in general is only the starting point. Managers need to understand the key drivers of change and also the differential impact of these external influences and drivers on particular industries, markets and individual organisations. It is worthwhile assessing which factors are the most important at the present time and which will be over the coming years. It is particularly important that the future impact is assessed and fully understood.

Business Environment and the Entrepreneurship

Everywhere you turn nowadays, you always hear about venturing into entrepreneurship. But what is entrepreneurship exactly? It is actually defined as the process wherein a group or an individual makes an effort to pursue opportunities to satisfy needs and wants through uniqueness and innovation. Some people have the misconception that entrepreneurs are gamblers in the sense that they take risks and invest in industries that have no record of success. However, the truth is, these entrepreneurs take calculated risks that have the potential to provide them with huge returns.

The key factors you need to remember about entrepreneurship are opportunities, innovation, and growth. An entrepreneur sees opportunities in environmental trends and changes that nobody has seen before and pursues this opportunity with whatever resources he has at hand. The second theme in entrepreneurship is innovation which involves transforming and revolutionizing existing products or services to cope up with the changing global environment.
The third theme is growth; this involves the continual efforts of an entrepreneur to expand his business locally and internationally. An entrepreneur is on the constant look out on how to create new approaches to make his business grow and become a huge success.

These themes are the key factors which businesses are founded upon. The largest corporations you find today did not start out big, rather they started out as small enterprises by visionaries who want more than what is offered to them. You can see from the history of some of the most successful business today that the founders of these businesses have taken great leaps of faith and incredible amounts of risks in order to be what they are today. Wherever you turn, you see the results of entrepreneurship. But it is most obvious in internet commerce because this is a new industry. People that were unheard of before are becoming some of the riches names in the world and it is all because they have taken risks and have succeeded. So whether we realize it or not, it is the entrepreneurs who drive the global environment nowadays. They are the ones who are always seeking out opportunities and taking risks to improve our world and profit from it in return.

The business environment and even the technological advancements that are available today would not have been possible if these entrepreneurs did not come out of their comfort zone to invest in the development of these businesses. As you can see, having the entrepreneurial spirit is definitely necessary for businesses to reach greater heights and provide better and faster products and services to their clients. It is no wonder then that a lot of business enterprises are hiring young and dynamic individuals with a vision and who are not afraid to take calculated risks to ensure the survival of the business tomorrow.

Non Slip Flooring in the Business Environment

Having a grand tiled entrance hall can certainly provide your business with a level of sophistication. The only problem is that this type of flooring can often be slippery even without water spills. To avoid accidents from happening you need to know about non slip flooring in the business environment.

The sad reality is that people will sue for almost anything these days. Protecting your business from law suits needs to be one of your main priorities. If you have not taken the precautionary measures to provide a safe working environment for both your employees and clients you could face some problems. The best way to avoid accidents from small slips to major falls, while still having the flooring of your choice is to understand about non slip solutions. There are a variety of different options that will not make you give up on the aesthetics you want for your building.

At first non slip flooring was associated to laminated or vinyl tiling. These types of flooring were able to provide safe and slip free surfaces but were not always the most attractive. As businesses evolved to take more care in the way in which they presented themselves, interior design became important. Laminated or vinyl tiling would not always give off the right impression and was considered to look cheap by some people. Therefore, it was necessary to find a new solution to create slip free surfaces without using these options. This is where the non slip solution comes in. This solution was developed so that you were able to have the floor of your dreams without compromising on your interior design choices. The solution can be placed on almost all materials, including a number of different tiles. You can easily have the grand granite or marble tiled entrance hall for your business without worrying about people slipping and falling. You will be able to avoid law suits and the risk of getting sued for negligence by simply putting this system in place.

How does the non slip solution work? There are two options when choosing the non slip solution, DIY or hire the professionals. The DIY solution is better for smaller areas and is applied in the same manner as the normal solution. If you need a wide area covered than it is best to hire the professionals. The solution will be applied as quickly as possible, it dries completely clear which is why it is possible to put it on a number of different surfaces. It does not leave any residue and will provide you with non slip surfaces for a minimum of 5 years. With the careful maintenance of the floor and the correct product you can guarantee perfect surfaces for your business.