The Essential MBA


Edited by: Susan Miller

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    This book is dedicated to the memory of my parents, and to John whose constant love and support have meant more than words can say.

    About the Author

    Susan Miller is Professor of Organizational Behaviour at Hull University Business School in the UK where she is also Academic Director of the MBA programmes. Prior to this she worked at Durham University where she was Director of the Part-time MBA programme. She has wide experience of designing MBA programmes and teaching MBA students both in the UK and internationally, including Bahrain, Hong Kong, Singapore, Oman, Barbados and the Netherlands. She is involved in the Association of MBAs which accredits MBA programmes worldwide.

    Besides a long-standing interest in issues associated with management learning and education, her other research focus has centred on strategic decision making in organizations. This research has examined how major decisions are taken and implemented in organizational settings and she has published widely in this area.

    She held a position of non-executive Director of a large public health organization for four years and, prior to becoming an academic, she worked in both manufacturing and service organizations in the private and public sectors for nine years.

    Notes on Contributors

    Emmanuel D. Adamides is Associate Professor of Operations and Technology Management at the University of Patras, Greece. His research interests are in the areas of operations strategy, and innovation and sustainable technology management. He is particularly interested in the application of systems approaches to analyze and support managerial activity in these areas.

    Tony Boczko is a Lecturer at the Hull University Business School. He has held senior positions in Local Government and the UK Health Service, undertaken business consultancies for a range of UK organizations and presented academic papers at national and international conferences. Tony has also co-authored a number of texts on accounting, finance, and information systems.

    Timothy Campbell is currently the Director of the MBA programme at the University of Dubai. Tim has extensive industry, academic and management training experience. He is the co-author of Organizational Behaviour, with Stephen Robbins and Tim Judge, and his research has appeared in international publications such as the Journal of Business Ethics; Business Ethics: A European Review; and Systems Research and Behavioral Science.

    Tony Cockerill is the Leverhulme Emeritus Fellow at the Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge. He has wide experience of executive education, having designed, directed and contributed to an extensive range of tailored and open programmes. His principal clients include Halifax Bank of Scotland, HM Customs and Revenue, HSBC, Kodak, and the former UK Department for Education and Skills. He was Director of Executive Education at Manchester Business School from 1987 to 1994.

    Dianne Dean is a Lecturer at the University of Hull Business School. Her current research interests are in the area of consumer behaviour and social and political marketing and communications. She has published a number of papers in political marketing including the application of consumer behaviour concepts to political marketing. Previously she worked as a client-side market researcher, before joining the University of Lincoln in the early 1990s. She moved to Hull University in 2002. Dianne has a degree in politics from Hull University and a doctorate from Stirling.

    Peter M. Hamilton is a Senior Lecturer in human resource management at Durham Business School, University of Durham. He has previously worked at Imperial College and the University of Central Lancashire. Before that he worked in the National Health Service. He is currently researching in the areas of dirty work and service work.

    Christos-Dimitris Tsinopoulos is a Lecturer in Operations and Project Management at Durham Business School, University of Durham. Christos has a PhD from the University of Warwick as well as Bachelor and Master degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Sheffield. Christos is an assessor of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers’ Manufacturing Excellence awards. He has been a research fellow in new product development at the Warwick Manufacturing Group as well as a quality and maintenance engineer for copper and aluminum industries in Greece.


    I would like to acknowledge the help and contribution of my fellow authors and the publishing team at SAGE who have been unfailingly supportive of this endeavour.

    Guided Tour

    Welcome to the guided tour of The Essential MBA. This tour will take you through the main sections and special features in the text.

    Chapter overview and Key concepts: A brief chapter overview and list of key concepts will help you to navigate your way through each chapter
    Case illustration: Case illustrations reinforce your understanding of the key concepts.
    Definitions: Key terms are clearly defined for quick reference.
    Summary and Questions for reflection: We review the main concepts and issues to be sure that you are clear on what was covered, and why. Questions are provided at the end of each chapter to encourage you to explore what you have learnt.
    Further reading: Relevant articles and book chapters will enhance your understanding of each chapter.

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