Magazine article Teaching Business & Economics

The Globalisation of Business

Magazine article Teaching Business & Economics

The Globalisation of Business

Article excerpt


The following learning activity is presented as a possible means for teachers to allow their students to examine the concepts surrounding the internationalisation of business introduced in Mark Cook's article.

The article examines the changing nature of the business environment which organisations are facing towards the end of the twentieth century and the opportunities which are arising for businesses from recent developments such as the single currency. Reasons why firms are seeking to internationalise are identified, as well as the ways in which the internationalisation process has taken place, and the role of the small firm in internationalisation operations.

The activity aims to offer Advanced level students, particularly those studying in the second year of their program, the opportunity to explore internationalisation issues in a context which is relevant to their own career choices in the future and which might also relate to their current tutorial program in areas such as UCAS applications, and working abroad.

The learning activity enables Advanced level students to examine the effect of business decision making from both an employer and employee perspective. This might enable them to consider their role as young executives in an increasingly international business environment, responsive to managerial decision-making, in addition to adopting a role as a key strategic thinker within the business organisation. Learners will be allowed to examine an issue exemplified by a recent newspaper article, which highlights the real business environment as a continual source of fresh and up-to-date information. Teachers might use the stimulus material to supplement fictional case study work, or to be integral to a role play activity.

Students will be allowed to appreciate stakeholders' positions in competitive and successful markets, and to further develop a critical understanding of business activity. Therefore the emphasis placed on using respected business concepts and theories to understand business failure, a common experience of A level students, would be lessened. Advanced Business Studies students will also have the opportunity to be reflective on social, legal, economic, political and technological change and its effect on global business behaviour.

Thus learners would be encouraged to adopt a thoughtful and broader approach to current business activity through their examination of actual business experience, which reinforces the interrelated nature of the subject.

The subject area of internationalisation readily lends itself to work on both Advanced GNVQ and A level courses. In Advanced GNVQ, the article could act as stimulus material for evidence indicators from Unit 4: Human resources, particularly Element 4.2: Investigate job roles and changing working conditions. Also, Unit 5: Production and employment in the economy, particularly Element 5.2: Investigate and evaluate employment, and 5.3: Examine the competitiveness of UK industry.

The optional unit, Unit 16: Living and Working in Europe, could be initially approached using the article, particularly Element 16.2: Investigate the impact of European legislation on employment practices, and Element 16.4: Investigate different work opportunities among European member states. Teachers might also use the material to give students the opportunity to produce evidence for elements from several different units, thus reemphasising the interrelated nature of the subject. …

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