Theory can be defined as “a formal logical explanation of some events that includes predictions of how things relate to one another”[1].

Concepts are “collectives used to label certain bits of experience. In other words, they are elementary constructs by which reality is classified and categorised”[2]. Alternatively, concepts are “mental constructs or images developed to symbolise ideas, persons, things, or events”[3]

Model can be defined as “a set of ideas and numbers that describe the past, present or future state of something”[4]

A framework is “a system of rules, laws, agreements, etc. that establish the way that something operates”[5]

A tool is “a thing used to perform a job”[6].

There are many theories, concepts, models, frameworks and tools in the area of business that you will have to use at some stage of your studies. The following are the most popular ones listed in alphabetical order:



  • Kotter’s Eight Steps Model
  • Lewin’s Force-Field Theory of Change
  • Lewin’s Model of Change


Consumer behavior

  • Behaviorist approach to consumer behavior
  • Cognitive approach to consumer behavior
  • Consumer buyer behavior
  • Consumer decision making process
  • Customer perceived value
  • Economic Man approach to consumer behavior
  • Model of Goal Directed Behavior
  • Psychodynamic Approach to consumer behavior
  • Theory of Trying


Corporate Social Responsibility

  • Approaches to CSR
  • Carrol’s CSR Pyramid
  • Code of Ethics



  • Cross-cultural competencies
  • Cross-cultural management
  • Elements of organizational culture
  • Harrison’s Model of Culture
  • Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions
  • Trompenaars and Hampden-Turner Cultural Dimensions



  • Foreign Direct Investment
  • Inter-industry and intra-industry trade
  • Liberal and coordinated market economies
  • Specialization for developing countries
  • Theory of absolute advantage
  • Theory of comparative advantage


Human Resources Management

  • Cognitive Theory of Training Transfer
  • Continuous Professional Development
  • Equity Theory of Motivation
  • Employee training and development
  • Forms of training transfer
  • Frederick Hertzberg’s Two Factor Theory
  • Hertzberg’s Motivation and Hygiene Factors
  • Honey and Mumford’s Learning Style
  • Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs
  • McClelland’s Achievement Motivation
  • Job analysis as an important HRM factor
  • Recruitment and selection plan
  • Stimulus Generalization Theory
  • Tangible and intangible employee motivation tools
  • Theory X and Theory Y
  • The Principle of Identical Elements
  • Three Cs of Intrinsic Motivation


Management and Leadership

  • Belbin’s Team Roles Theory
  • Critical path analysis
  • Cycles of failure and cycles of success
  • Executive information systems
  • Fiedler’s Theory
  • Functions of leadership
  • Hersey and Blanchard’s Model of Leadership
  • Leadership Continuum Theory
  • Leadership vs Management
  • Management information system
  • Management structure
  • Managerial Grid by Blake and Mouton
  • Organization information needs
  • Path-Goal Theory
  • The Great Men Theory
  • The importance of time management
  • Transactional leadership style
  • Tuckman Theory for Developing Teams



  • Ansoff Growth Matrix
  • Brand Essence Wheel
  • Classification of viral marketing
  • Integrated Marketing Communications
  • Marketing Communication Mix
  • Marketing strategy
  • Porter’s Generic Strategies
  • Product life cycle
  • Product Placement
  • Segmentation, Targeting & Positioning
  • Self-Reference Criterion
  • Standardization vs adaptation
  • Strategic marketing process
  • Viral marketing criticism
  • Unique Selling Proposition
  • 7 Ps of Marketing



Some of the above (hyperlinked) are explained in this portal. The portal will be expanded to include in-depth explanations of theories, concepts, models, frameworks and tools in the area of business studies in a regular manner.



[1] Zikmund, W.G., Babin, J., Carr, J. & Griffin, M. (2012) “Business Research Methods: with Qualtrics Printed Access Card” Cengage Learning  p.38

[2] Fox, W. & Bayat, M.S. (2007) “A Guide to Managing Research” Juta Publications  p.45

[3] Monette, D.R., Gullivan, T.J. & DeJong, C.R. (2011) “Applied Social Research: A Tool for the Human Resources” 8th edition, Cengage Learning p.30

[4] Merriam-Webster (2015) Available at:

[5] Macmillan Dictionary (2015) Available at:

[6] Oxford Dictionaries (2015) Available at: