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About this book

This compact phrase book of key business terminology is an invaluable resource for students who want to communicate their ideas, arguments and analyses with greater clarity and precision.

Divided into thirty bite-size sections, users can quickly and easily find the topic they need when preparing and writing essays, reports and case studies. Each section contains three parts: words in action, taken from real academic writing; information to help you readers use these words correctly; and ‘nearly but not quite right’ examples from real students’ work.

This is an essential companion for students studying both undergraduate and postgraduate courses in business and management, and is suitable for use at any stage of their studies. It is also ideal for those studying related disciplines, including business management, administration, HR, finance, systems analysis, project management, business law and corporate governance.

Table of Contents

1. Introducing your topic and identifying the issues

Abstract
Your essays should start by telling your reader why your topic is important and what the main issues are, and your reports should usually start by stating the aim and scope of your assignment (see section 2). Be careful not to start discussing the issues in detail in your introduction – leave that until the main body of your assignment.
Jeanne Godfrey

2. Stating your aim and scope

Abstract
In essays and reports you need to state your aim and scope (also referred to as remit and terms of reference). When stating your aims be specific – are you going to analyse, examine, provide data, evaluate, discuss, make recommendations or do several of these things? When stating your scope it is often useful to say what you are not going to cover as well as what you will discuss. Note that the use of I is increasingly acceptable in academic writing, but check this with your tutor.
Jeanne Godfrey

3. Stating and structuring your argument

Abstract
For some assignments you will want to state or claim something (sometimes called a proposition or thesis statement) which you then explain, defend and develop to a conclusion. Section 3 gives you words and phrases for talking about propositions, assumptions and theory explicitly. Note that just talking about a proposition or theory is not the same thing as actually making an argument, developing a theory or analysing assumptions. Actually doing these things involves a series of stages – analysing ideas, evaluating evidence and drawing conclusions – and so usually takes up the whole essay or report. You will need to use vocabulary from many sections of this book in order to complete these different steps, particularly sections 20–30.
Jeanne Godfrey

4. Defining and classifying

Abstract
Tutors often want you to define things in your own words. You may need to give just a brief definition, or a much longer (extended) definition which includes grouping or differentiating between similar terms, giving examples and discussing alternative definitions. Indeed, some assignments are composed entirely of developing and discussing a definition. You will also find useful words and phrases in section 5.
Jeanne Godfrey

5. Groupings, affiliations and being separate

Abstract
This essay will look at the role of peer groups in value project management. Landsafe is affiliated to the Bank of America. As a subject, project management is closely allied to risk management and strategic planning. Despite the problems discussed, single-project alliances have advantages over long-term partnerships. An alternative to fully merged legal mega firms is the concept of association, in which co-operating firms present a united force externally but are separate legal and financial entities. We recommend that a delegation of industry leaders meets annually to discuss these issues. The Faroe Islands currently have bilateral trade agreements with Iceland, Norway and Switzerland.
Jeanne Godfrey

6. Characteristics, qualities and skills

Abstract
Strong leaders tend to have certain intrinsic / innate qualities in common. This report looks at the most effective ways the risks inherent to large construction projects can be managed. Extrinsic motivation comes from external sources such as a reward, coercion or fear of punishment. Charitable donations have intangible benefits such as good PR, and tangible advantages such as tax relief.
Jeanne Godfrey

7. Events, situations, advantages and disadvantages

Abstract
High-risk tourist destinations need crisis management plans to negate the impact of negative occurrences (Sonmez 1999). The 2015 Hiscox report looks at the incidence of employee theft in the US. The Pareto principle states that for most events the consequences arise from only a small number of causes. This report has analysed and evaluated the phenomenon of online personal entrepreneurialism. During the Great Depression circumstances were such that civil unrest became common. I argue that good HR management can only manifest itself if the company has a coherent business strategy.
Jeanne Godfrey

8. Ownership, responsibility and loyalty

Abstract
Advantages of proprietary software over open-source platforms include add-ons and bespoke features. Non-executives act in an advisory capacity and are not responsible / accountable / do not have responsibility / accountability for the running of the company. Abu-Rabia Quadar and Oplatka (2008) examine the experiences of Muslim women who have supervisory roles in education. It is incumbent upon managers to make sure their teams follow the organisation’s ethical code. I will show that in this case the employer had a duty of care. When designating Power of Attorney you need to decide whether you want it to be ‘durable’ or ‘springing’. The remit of the Cabinet Office Mystery Shopper scheme is to provide a route for suppliers to raise concerns about public procurement.
Jeanne Godfrey

9. Regulations, legalities and penalties

Abstract
It is important for a regulator to have a framework for the ‘parameters of blame’; that is, its tolerance limits for failures by the firms it regulates (Black 2006). This report summarises the legalities of setting up as sole trader, and looks at how to avoid common pitfalls. The agreement of both houses of the Japanese parliament are required to ratify / validate a treaty. The requisite / required number of members is prescribed / stipulated / set down / laid down in its governing documents. UK contract law stipulates that if an asset used in a business belongs to an individual, personal liability exists as to that asset. When setting up a limited liability partnership, it is mandatory to have an LLP agreement with all members. In 2001 a Canadian appeals court upheld a city edict requiring owners of new hotels to keep current employees for at least three months. Entities dealing with personal data are under an obligation to adhere to / abide by data protection principles.
Jeanne Godfrey

10. Encouragement, discouragement, avoidance, prevention, counteraction and elimination

Abstract
RIBA educational boards encourage / foster innovation in how architecture is taught. Irwin (2015) examines the proposition that a growth in trade is conducive to / promotes social welfare. Better catering facilities and office environment will give staff a boost and increase job satisfaction. We recommend that the owners set up an ‘incentives and perks scheme’ for employees. The 2016 Adante report suggests that importers would be spurred on if the currency was strengthened. The tax commissioner urged Ireland to drop its objections to multinationals filing a single European tax return. I argue that international charities reinforce negative stereotypes of African societies.
Jeanne Godfrey

11. Norms, limits, inclusion and exclusion

Abstract
It is normal business practice for a company to have external auditors. Webley (2014) addresses the need for universal norms of ethical behaviour in international business. We analyse examples of where normative business behaviour has become codified into law. Business writing conventions include a direct style which is not overly formal and avoidance of buzzwords. Studies suggest that top business leaders do not always conform to the image of the charismatic extrovert. Abnormal behaviour is defined as that which not only deviates from the norm but which is also undesirable.
Jeanne Godfrey

12. Risks, threats, disputes and resolution

Abstract
Managers who make important decisions without explanation risk alienating their employees. George, Ping and Donglin (2015) conclude that businesses with a ‘high capital structure’ are more exposed to / vulnerable to / prone to (the risk of) / susceptible to / carry the risk of / at risk of having future cash flow problems. A new competitor can put at risk / put in jeopardy / jeopardise the market share built up by other businesses. EU regulations and associated penalties for non-compliance can be damaging to US companies. Technological changes can pose / be a threat to small businesses that cannot afford new software platforms. This report examines how the ‘deep web’ economy might be threatening legitimate business sectors. When crowdfunding first arrived, the UK financial regulator gave what James (2016) calls an ‘ominous’ warning about the dangers of this new phenomenon.
Jeanne Godfrey

13. Size, proportion, degree, level and extent

Abstract
This section contains words and phrases for approximate amounts (e.g. a large number of), but of course you will also need to use precise numerical values when discussing your data. Note also that most adjectives to describe size (e.g. small) can also be used to describe amount (see section 14).
Jeanne Godfrey

14. Amount, distribution and supply

Abstract
I argue that the presence of a large business premises in the area should, on balance, be welcomed. A neglected area of investigation is the relative absence of competition in the financial sector. Too much The survey results support the idea that, as Leggat (2008) observed, too much specialisation in management roles contributes to a disconnect between managers and clinicians. Businesses in the region pay excessively high tax, as rates are calculated on turnover rather than profit. The contract stipulates that the interim estimate value should not exceed that of the final proposal. The excess / surplus / surfeit / glut / oversupply of sugar is driving down market prices. I recommend that a root and branch review is carried out to identify superfluous areas of expenditure. People with an overdeveloped sense of competitiveness have a higher incidence of chest pain.
Jeanne Godfrey

15. Time, sequence, duration and frequency

Abstract
This report will firstly give an overview of past / previous studies on job satisfaction and well-being. Mumbai was formerly / previously known as Bombay. / The former name of Mumbai was Bombay. With hindsight / In retrospect it would have been better to use a larger sample for our study. As yet / So far / Up to now there has been little narrowing of the gender pay gap in the hotel industry. The largest construction project ever conducted in Europe is underway / has started / has begun.
Jeanne Godfrey

16. Increase, decrease, trends, cycles and speed

Abstract
See also section 17 for other useful words and phrases. Example sentences starting with * indicate that the nouns or adjectives describing size of increase or decrease are in order of smallest to largest. Global GDP from seaborne trade has increased / risen to about 60 trillion US dollars (OECD 2017). The government increased / raised taxes on alcohol last year in an attempt to deter heavy drinking. * This report predicts an uptick // uptrend // upswing // upsurge // a surge / a boom in market activity. Prices have escalated since the last quarter.
Jeanne Godfrey

17. Change, development, growth and progress

Abstract
B2B organisations are moving / shifting more towards a focus on added customer value rather than just price. Many B2B companies are diverting resources / moving / shifting away from competitive pricing to customer service and added value. The company’s decision to team up with a pharmaceutical giant is a departure from its usual approach. The data show that China is undergoing a shift away from manufacturing towards the services sector.
Jeanne Godfrey

18. Strategy, models, methodology and method

Abstract
This report looks at the benefits of using private funding as part of a new venture’s investment strategy. I propose a model for tailoring operational strategy according to the director’s leadership style. Some large cybercrime groups now model themselves on legitimate businesses. I have used IBM’s component business modelling to help see how we might operate in real market scenarios. We devised / constructed / formulated a model that takes into account recent changes in consumer behaviour. McLean’s business model was new because it integrated road transport and shipping logistics. Our rationale for promoting an ethical strategy is that businesses need to be trusted in order to remainprofitable in the long term (Fritzsche 2005, Svensson and Wood 2008).
Jeanne Godfrey

19. Cause, effect, results and findings

Abstract
Note that the first two groups of words in this section are divided into ‘cause to effect’ and ‘effect to cause’ for presentation purposes only; many of them can be used (with appropriate grammatical changes) to describe both cause to effect and effect to cause. There is (often) a causal link between an increase in the cost of raw materials and inflation. An increase in the cost of raw materials causes prices to rise / results in prices rising.
Jeanne Godfrey

20. Analysing arguments and ideas

Abstract
Analysing involves taking something apart and breaking it down in order to examine it. You need to analyse ideas, arguments or data carefully before you can evaluate them. See also sections 21 and 22 for other useful words and phrases. We need to break down / separate out / unpick / deconstruct the term ‘business ethics’ into its constituent parts / components / elements. Separating / Uncoupling / Disassociating rights from responsibilities gives us a clearer picture of the issue. The author’s use of the word ‘freedom’ blurs the (crucial) distinction / line between individual and collective choice.
Jeanne Godfrey

21. Identifying differences, similarities and common themes

Abstract
This assignment compares the birth rate of different EU member states. We conducted a qualitative comparison of consumer attitudes to the three products. The comparative analysis shows little difference in behaviour between the companies. Below we contrast the features of the latest Apple and Samsung models. The two organisations have contrasting public images.
Jeanne Godfrey

22. Identifying relationships and making logical links

Abstract
Many economists argue that a successful society hinges / depends / is dependent on / upon economic growth. The company operates on the basis that salary increases depend on / upon whether targets are reached. The company operates on the basis of salary increases being contingent / conditional on reaching the targets. I agree with Barsoux (1996) that humour is a necessary / requisite part of a successful organisation. Society and economic performance are interdependent / mutually dependent // interrelated / interconnected.
Jeanne Godfrey

23. Identifying points of view and position

Abstract
This essay takes / holds / subscribes to the view that earning money from money is unethical. The view that all research should help develop theory is debatable, according to May (2000). Kirsch (2010) thinks / holds the opinion / is of the opinion that mining cannot be sustainable. Adam Smith is widely regarded as / viewed as / seen as / thought of as / considered to be / deemed to be the father of free-market capitalism. The article criticises the government’s stance / position on potential strike action.
Jeanne Godfrey

24. Evaluating ideas and evidence positively

Abstract
When you analyse and evaluate source material it is important to use the right verbs, in order to show your tutor that you have correctly identified what the author is doing (e.g. stating, questioning or arguing). It is also important to use the right verbs, adjectives and nouns to show your tutor what you think of the author’s ideas.
Jeanne Godfrey

25. Evaluating ideas and evidence negatively and disagreeing

Abstract
When you analyse and evaluate ideas and source material it is important to use the right verbs, in order to show your tutor that you have correctly identified what the author is doing (e.g. stating, questioning or arguing). It is also important to use the right verbs, adjectives and nouns to show your tutor what you think of the author’s ideas.
Jeanne Godfrey

26. Evaluating importance and significance

Abstract
This essay has argued that understanding your market is paramount / imperative. Reaching a state of positive cash flow is crucial / critical / vital for / to / pivotal to a new business. Cash flow plays a crucial / a critical / a vital role / part in a new business. We show that innovative business models are essential / indispensable / invaluable for success. World War II had a significant / a great // an overwhelming // a profound impact on the breakdown of the class system. World War II was (highly) significant in the breakdown of the class system.
Jeanne Godfrey

27. Suggesting impact and implications

Abstract
Gurtman (1990) showed that ageism can have a profound impact on / effect on people’s behaviour. Business leaders in the sector need more training in how to consider the possible consequences // repercussions // ramifications // implications of their decisions. Lowering the regional business tariff will have a positive impact on local traders. Cognitive theory enhances / helps / improves / facilitates // expands our understanding of workplace stress.
Jeanne Godfrey

28. Drawing conclusions, generating ideas and clarifying your position

Abstract
This report has assessed // evaluated // argued // clarified // highlighted // given an account of … To summarise, our analysis has exposed / revealed / identified // shown that … The conclusion we can draw from the survey is that students prefer seminars. As people are on average richer but not happier than forty years ago, we can perhaps conclude that … These findings corroborate / confirm / are consistent with / support / verify the idea that …
Jeanne Godfrey

29. Applying theory to practice

Abstract
I discuss how the concept of total value management can be put into practice / actualised / realised // articulated / applied in the context of large construction projects. This report has looked at two recent real-world // practical examples of cloud computing and crowdsourcing. Many researchers agree that the notion of the business model needs translating into something more practicable (Zott et al. 2010, Teece 2010, Wirtz et al. 2010 and others).
Jeanne Godfrey

30. Justifying alternative strategies and making recommendations

Abstract
Vertical integration provides a viable alternative in the face of the rising costs of imported foods. A more sustainable alternative to traditional forms of fracking is the use of aviation hydrovibrators. Although (relatively) unpalatable, eliminating obsolete product lines rather than merely changing product design will allow continued profitability and growth. In order to harness employee talent and potential effectively, a more transformational leadership style is called for / required.
Jeanne Godfrey
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