A business (also known as enterprise or firm) is an organization involved in the trade of goods, services, or both to consumers. Businesses are predominant in capitalist economies, where most of them are privately owned and administered to earn profit to increase the wealth of their owners. Businesses may also be not-for-profit or state-owned. A business owned by multiple individuals may be referred to as a company, although that term also has a more precise meaning.
The etymology of "business" relates to the state of being busy either as an individual or society as a whole, doing commercially viable and profitable work. The term "business" has at least three usages, depending on the scope — the singular usage to mean a particular organization; the generalized usage to refer to a particular market sector, "the music business" and compound forms such as agribusiness; and the broadest meaning, which encompasses all activity by the community of suppliers of goods and services. However, the exact definition of business, like much else in the philosophy of business, is a matter of debate and complexity of meanings.
Famous quotes containing the word firm:
“Evolution is the law of policies: Darwin said it, Socrates endorsed it, Cuvier proved it and established it for all time in his paper on The Survival of the Fittest. These are illustrious names, this is a mighty doctrine: nothing can ever remove it from its firm base, nothing dissolve it, but evolution.”
—Mark Twain [Samuel Langhorne Clemens] (18351910)
“Our Constitution ... was not a perfect instrument, it is not perfect yet; but it provided a firm base upon which all manner of men of all races, colors and creeds could build our solid structure of democracy.”
—Franklin D. Roosevelt (18821945)
“Although a firm swat could bring a recalcitrant child swiftly into line, the changes were usually external, lasting only as long as the swatter remained in view....Permanent transformation had to be internal....The habits of self discipline, as laborious and frustrating as they were to achieve, offered the only real possibility of keeping children safe from their own excesses as well as the omnipresent dangers of society.”
—Mary Kay Blakely (20th century)