What You’ll Learn in School About the Most Important Business Skills

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Marketing is the art of selling products or services to consumers. In business, marketing is the process of communicating information about your company’s offerings to potential customers. Marketing includes advertising, public relations, sales promotion, direct mail, events, sponsorships, and word-of-mouth.


Sales is the act of exchanging money for goods and/or services. A sale may involve buying something outright (such as a car) or leasing something (such as a cellphone). Salespeople often work for companies called retailers, who sell their wares at stores. Retailers range from small mom-and-pop shops to chain stores.


Management is the process of planning, organizing, directing, coordinating, and controlling people and resources toward achieving organizational goals. Managers set priorities and allocate resources to accomplish these goals.


Operations is the practice of running a business. An operations manager oversees the day-to-day activities of employees and ensures that everything runs smoothly. He or she might oversee purchasing, production, shipping, inventory management, customer service, human resource management, finance, etc.


Finance is the study of how organizations generate revenue, pay expenses, and invest capital. Finance managers keep track of financial records and make sure they are accurate. They also ensure that enough funds are available to cover current obligations and future investments.


Accounting is the process of recording transactions and summarizing them according to rules. Accountants record income and expenses, calculate profits and losses, and prepare reports to help businesses manage their finances.


Economics is the study of how individuals, families, groups, nations, and economies interact over time. Economists look at factors like employment rates, inflation, interest rates, taxes, government spending, and trade among countries.