Reflections from Lectures on Global Organization Environment

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The first lecture provided me with a general view of different types of organization and how it is governed to meet its stakeholders' needs. In this session, I did have deeper understanding of why many organizations have both executive and non-executive directors to maintain the company long-term development throughout transparency and integrity. Besides, the definition of stakeholders stated by Freeman in 1984 also give a fully understand that not only my customers who I am target at but also other relevant groups that more or less affect my business such as suppliers, employees, authorities…. Each kind of stakeholder has unique perceptions and concerns so aware of their conflicts and analyze of their concerns help the organization to improve its strategy for further develop. By this way, organization is able to fulfill the concern of each group of stakeholder in different priorities.

Furthermore, the issue on cooperate governance draw me lot of interest and intention for further reading, especially its practice in global context. " How global is a good corporate governance" discussed by Maier (2005) in which it clearly define how corporate governance is put into practices of most of the countries and reason why this issue is more concerned after financial scandals of Enron, Maxwell Group…, the failure in management policies. The article also provides with governance in practice including the proof of the board structure and its size, independence, remuneration disclosure, board diversity. Even though policies and tendency are differ from each country, the firm is under the unitary form or two-tier board, the balance voice if different stakeholders is maintained and independent judgment is required such as independent auditors... Regarding board structure and size, I am interested that Germany also has employee representative in it governance board, the same practice in Vietnamese firms where Labor Union also has floor and voice. Most popular is the separation of CEO and Chairman and the diversity of genders as the world tendency.

These concepts are actually not brand-new but they insist the role of governance to serve for the company sustainability. In order to serve for strong development, my organization should masterly aware of the questions that "who should it serve" and "who does it serve". The more effective the governance is, the more satisfaction from stakeholders and finally the more sustainability the organization gets.


Maier S. (2005) How global is good cooperate governance? EIRIS, Retrieved from

Harrison, A. (2010). Business Enviroment in Global Context . New York, USA: Oxford University Press

Lecture 3: PESTEL Analysis

This is really a useful lecture as it helps me to recognize that every organization is an open system and it can be viewed in different dimensions. Moreover, all the existing factors around have specific impacts on the business. Particularly, PESTEL framework plays as an effective analysis tool to generate a big picture of why and how the external environment takes effect on the future development of the business including threats and opportunities. From that, possible future strategy is tabled to get the target objectives.

Social factors is my aspect of interest. I really concerns in how business catch up with society and how corporate social responsibility (CSR) is more and more implemented as a way to create valuable market opportunities. Businesses have never been isolated from sociopolitical expectation (Bonini, Mendonca, & Oppenheim, 2006). Therefore, the article named "when social issues become strategic" confirm that business can create long-term benefit by highlighting social needs and meet the unmet consumers' concerns. Lots of enterprise really success in deeply investigate the social trend such as obese issues in food and beverage industry, the same to automobile and electronic industry to cope with social behavior to climate change, pollution by energy saving or environment-friendly products. These can create an alignment from society and serve for the long-term sustainability. The challenges are how to find a way for companies to incorporate with social common goals to produce a better products and services. Moreover, researches by Laura (2009), University of Texas, found that investors are not only care of how cooperate governance bring profit but also believe that CSR is an important implication for a firm's actions and value.

To my business, an organization serving in educational service sector, the concern of CSR is more importantly. The business benefit should be equivalent to the development of society for better life and society. Education nowadays is no-longer monopoly at all because autonomy and decentralization bring competitions and lots of challenges are ahead. As result, aware of foreseeable obstacles in its complexity and diversity by PESTEL analysis can help to take lead in this session.


Bonini, S. M., Mendonca, L. T., & Oppenheim, M. J. (2006). When social issues become strategy . Retrieved from Mc Kinsey Quarterly :

Starks, L. T. (2009). Financial Review. "Coperate governance and Coperate Social Responsibility; What do invester care about and what should invester care about" , 461-468.

Lecture 7: Emerging Countries - The case of China

This lesson focuses on three main points. Firstly is the over view of emerging economies where their industries grow rapidly. They all have some common characteristics of large & young population, rich of natural resources and attract more foreign investment. They reflect remarkable economic growth in term of good and services sector. In addition, other characteristics of social aspect such as culture diversity or political reforms make their differentiated development. Secondly, I got a broaden view of BRIC countries who show the fastest growth rate. These giants will take an important role in global economic recovery as well as global politics issues. Last but not least is the emerging of Asia which is considerably developing. If the twentieth century was the "American Century", it is believed that the 21st will be the "Asian Century". This statement urges me to search for how China economic reform policies to make it a phenomenon.

According to IMF's judgment while America is quite lack of quick revolution, China takes steps to transform from socialism to capitalism. China has shifted from an agriculture country to manufacturing center and as services provider. This country set privatization policies to attract inward investment for local business. It helped to push productivity and increase GDP. Besides, they also have opened policies to encourage FDI and international trade. This makes the transformation to the market-oriented economy. Liberation reform is also took placed by opening its low cost and vast manpower to merging with other high-tech and wealthier neighbors to form an "Asian Union". China also focuses on improving education and social literacy. Regarding technology, it is a leader in high-tech as it used to be. Furthermore, China's financial reserve is also higher than other countries due to its one-child policy, its saving habits that take 50% its GDP (IMF,2006) and significantly due to the demand oversea export demands. China export growth rates remarkably a boom and it is one of the main supplier of many developed countries. Even though China GDP per capital will take time to be compared with the US but it economic growth rate will take lead to be the world largest economy.

Looking back to Vietnam, one of the fastest developing countries regionally, after joining WTO in 2007, Vietnam has opportunities to approach funding sources, technology and knowledge. However, we should take carefully steps as lots of obstacles still ahead after two big recessions worldwide. We still lack of know-how and strong policies to due with high inflation rate, currency fluctuation… So, China will be good practices for Vietnamese policies makers.


Harrison, A. (2010). Business Enviroment in Global Context . New York, USA: Oxford University Press.

Silva-Ruete, J. (2006, Mar 7). International Monetory Fund . Retrieved April 1, 2011, from The Development of China's Export Performance:

Lecture 8: Porter's five forces

The lecture focuses on the competitive environment in which the organization is operating. Two important key ideas should be remembered that is the Industry Life Cycle and Porter's five forces model. These two analyses help the organization to figure out the suitable strategy. The theory and model of Industry Life Cycle makes clear of market reaction at different period as well as the consuming behavior of which find out the development and transition of products. Strategies in term of innovation, technology decision making on expanding or downsizing production are also applied accordingly. Other practical theory is Porter's five forces model used to analyze the attractration of an industry structure, its incentive competition and profitability. According to Michael Porter (2008), every industry examines the intensity competition decided by 5 forces. They are:

Supplier power;

Buyer power;

The threat of entry by new firm;

The threat form substitute products;

Rivalry between firms.

All above, I take impressive on the rivalry among existing competitors that may take most consideration from my current business. The more competitors in the same industry, the less profitability the firm enjoys and the more surplus the customer get which may called "consumer surplus". According to Porter, rivalry is an aspiration for leadership and strategy. Rivals depend on some factors. Firstly, the numerous competitors that have same size and equal power in market size. Then, industry growth rate also effects market share. Firms can compete by different ways in which price competition sometimes destruct the profitability. Meanwhile, rivalry take placed in distinctive product features, support services, delivery time, and brand entities to improve customer value. Even thought firm living with such competition, they must stay focus on increasing their strategic plan to due with cost cutting (fixed cost/switching cost) and increase the product differentiated.

Poster's five forces can be used in every industry and my business is not an exception. We have to face with harsh competition with other new-born and prestigious English language centers. Besides the running in competitive tuition fees, we also take consideration to maintain our position by development of quality curriculum, teaching and learning technology and make use of our advantages in source of native teachers. Price competition is a must; however, we have to look in a big picture of possible advantages and disadvantages from others existing competitors and our end also.


Porter, M. (2008). The five competitive forces that shape strategy. Harvard Business Review, 86(1), 78-93.

Porter, M. (1980). How competitive forces shape strategy. McKinsey Quarterly, 34-50.

Lecture 2: The changing of international environment

Our world is in the ear of globalization and the country's economy has to trade outskirt to follow international trend. In this lecture, the notion of multinational companies has been provided in term of different scales to response to global context. Besides, the world tendency of economic integration has been proved by the forming of economic alliances. Like other nations, Vietnam is opening policies to attract foreign investment from MNCs to boost up the local economic with technology adoption, job creation.... However, everything has two sides one of which can lead to unbalance for local completion and global quality control.

The most important and exciting point of this lecture is the case of global trend throughout economic integration. It makes me eager to exploit how Vietnam circumstance after joining WTO in 2007. According to Prime Minister Vu Khoan (2010), Vietnam joins WTO after two consecutive recessions so we still face with challenges. For example, the export market is still unstable due to declining market as well as the fluctuation in foreign exchange rate. Moreover, he also insists that we have to prevent the backward on the same way with integration. Factually, there are the paradox happened after VN officially join WTO. The integration give floor for VN to join the game, but how to play is more important for not being left behind. For such the case come from investment from China, when they come to exploit the national resources and this make serious consideration in the sake of mutual long-term development. Additionally, the trade deficit is at around US 10 billion annually in which 90% of this deficit come from China. So, this is also an issue when one country economic too much depend trade from another country that lead to trade deficit and unbalance in domestic competition.

Finally, integration and joining to a trading blocks offer lots of advantages and open up and big opportunity for Vietnam to approach funding sources, technology and knowledge.


Huong, B. T. (2010, September 23). The Saigon Times . Retrieved March 23, 2011, from Post-WTO Challenges For Vietnam's Economy:

Lecture 9: Scenario

Through this lecture, I understand the important role scenarios as a means to analyze the turbulent of business environments as well as how scenarios are constructed. Besides, I understand the role of scenarios writing on order to make a forecast on what will happen in the future. As stated by Drucker (1980 ) that " the greatest danger in times of turbulence is not the turbulence - it is to act with yesterday's logic". It means that most of the company failure is its inability to react the specific circumstance and they fail to give the appropriate solution. Besides, the current stable and success may lead to the negligence to the complexity of the market and its external and internal environment. The scenario should be included credible factor and important point form PEST or Forces analysis and reason their importance. Additionally, effective scenarios must balance with the optimistic and worst cases.

World keep moving and unpredictable so be prepared or stay alert of any circumstance will be the firm more active with any worst context. Even thought the scenarios are best or worst, the more we prepare the more advantage we earn. Lesson learned from this lecture is how to think in the future, what may happen to my business rather than forecast what will happen and react passively. To my business, it is more important to look for our scenario basing on our key challenges. And one the scenarios should be "what course do learners are interested after TOELT iBT and TOEIC "so that we can predict and prepare for new trend of curriculum.


Schnaars, S. , & Ziamou, P. (2001). The essentials of scenario writing. Business Horizons, 44(4), 25-31

Lecture 5: European Environment

This session bring me some new ides about European environments. Their enlargement history with major geopolitical took place in recent year. Besides, it also shows me the institutional and policy making framework of EU and reason why other parties would love to join EU. Further more, it also figures out issues arising from the EU enlargement particularly the positive impact on economic growth and increasing FDI… Negative impact also included immigration and political issues. The lecture also helps me to reason why some nations want to join EU due to its advantages. I did access the article from Cameron in which he figure out 5 challenges that new member may face with in both positive and negative aspects. The first one that is most confusing to me that is the administrative capacity for acquis. Then will be its countries reform to follow the system of current states and to implement the acquis. The next challenge is about the reduction of high unemployment level while addressing the underlying structural imbalance. Financial constraint is also a problem for new member. Finally is the confliction in political issues.

From this article, I totally agree with Cameron that besides the advantages the new member has to face with other challenges. However, these obstacles will bring them more opportunities for integration and globalization.