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1.3 Organisational objectives - notes

We have looked at nature of business activity and the structure of organisations. We now need to look at the question 'why' organisations exist. This is the area of aims, objectives and goals. It is only when there are aims and goals, that it is possible to measure success by comparing actual performance against targeted performance. It is like navigation; you have to know where you are trying to go, before you know whether you are on, or off, course.

We also examine the concepts of ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility - areas of growing importance in the business world, not just because we should expect firms to act as responsible citizens, but also because their behaviour can provide competitive advantage.

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By the end of this section you should be able to:

  • Explain the importance of objectives in managing an organisation
  • Explain the purpose of mission and vision statements and analyse their role
  • Distinguish between objectives, strategies and tactics and how they interrelate
  • Examine the reasons why organisations set ethical objectives, analyse the advantages and disadvantages of these and discuss their impact.
  • Explain the different views that firms may take of their social responsibility in an international context
  • Analyse the value of social and environmental audits

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  • Evaluate the need to change objectives in response to changes in the internal and external environments
  • Discuss why a firm's view of its social responsibility, and society's expectations may change over time
  • Analyse the impact of a change in society's views on social responsibility on a firm's behaviour in a national and international context
  • Analyse the reasons why firms may choose different strategies towards their social responsibilities