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A term used to describe members of the executive team (i.e., CEO, CFO, CIO, COO, etc.).


Call option

An option that gives a buyer the ability to purchase or sell 100 shares of a principal security at a predetermined cost prior to a specific expiration date.


Call price

Price at which a bond or preferred stock may be redeemed by an issuing agency.


Callable bonds

A type of bond that provides a business with the option of repurchasing stocks at the call price.



The fixed nonlabor factors used in the production of goods and services, and the value of such factors.


Capital appreciation

Rise in the market price of an asset.


Capital expenditure

A dispersement for the purchase, replacement, renovation or expansion of facilities that can not be charged as an expense under generally accepted accounting standards.


Capital expense budget

Budgets used to determine capital expenditures for constructing or upgrading facilities and equipment for which a predetermined dollar value has been assigned based on its life expectancy.


Capital gain

The amount of profit realized from the sale of investments or property.


Capital gains tax

A tax that is levied on the actual gain realized from the sale of property.



The actual total amount of currency that is held in a bank, safe or cash register.


Cash budget

The process of analyzing or forecasting a companys expected cash flow over a specified period of time (can be long or short term).


Cash flow

The movement of cash resulting from operations into and out of a business or activity.


Cash-Based accounting

An accounting procedure that enters earnings and expenses into the books at the time when payment is received or the expense has been incurred.


C corporation

A company whose profits are taxed independently from an owners income.


Casual employment

The practice of hiring employees on an as-needed basis, either as a replacement for permanent full-time employees who are out on short- and long-term absences or to meet employers additional staffing needs during peak business periods.



The process of consolidating all decision-making authority under one central group or location.


Certificate of deposit (CD)

A deposit into an account at a financial savings institution that cannot be withdrawn prior to a specific maturity date.


Chain of command

Structure of decision-making responsibilities from the highest levels of authority to the lowest levels.


Churn rate

The number of participants who discontinue their use of a service over a given period of time divided by the average number of total participants.


Class action suit

A lawsuit filed by one party on behalf of themselves and other people in a group who share the same complaint.


Close corporation

A business type that is only legally allowed to have 3050 stockholders, based on the state in which the business is incorporated.



A form of corporate governance that requires a two-tiered corporate board structure: a typical management board and a supervisory board.


Cognitive ability testing

A testing instrument used during the selection process in order to measure the candidates learning and reasoning abilities.


Cold calling

A method used by sales people to obtain new business by making unsolicited calls to potential customers.



A culture that values cooperation and harmonious relationships among the group.


Commitment letter

A formal offer by a lending institution setting forth and making clear the terms under which it agrees to lend money to a borrower .



Physical items, such as food, grains and metals, which are compatible with other products of the same type, that are bought and sold by investors.


Common law employment test

Refers to the IRSs 20-question common law test, which examines the level of control exercised over a worker by an employer in order to determine whether the individual is an employee or an independent contractor.


Common stock

Securities that represent ownership in a company. Common stockholders are on the bottom of the priority ladder for ownership structure. In the event of liquidation, common shareholders have rights to a companys assets only after bondholders, preferred shareholders and other debtholders have been paid in full.



The knowledge, skills and abilities required to perform a specific task or function.


Comprehensive budgeting

A general term that encompasses the various types of budgets used within a company.


Concurrent validity

The means of determining a test or other assessment tools validity by comparing test scores against actual job performance.


Confucian dynamism

A cultural dimension that values a long-term orientation, persistence and thrift.



An assembly of diverse companies that are operated as a single unit under one common ownership.


Consumer Price Index (CPI)

An index of prices used to measure the change in the cost of basic goods and services in comparison with a fixed base period. Also called cost-of-living index.


Construct validity

The extent to which a test or other assessment instrument measures a particular trait.



An individual who works independently to assist and advise client organizations with various organizational functions and responsibilities on a fee-for-service basis.


Content validity

The degree to which a test or other assessment instrument used during the selection process measures the skills, knowledge and abilities or other related job qualifications.


Contingency planning

The process of identifying an organizations critical information systems and business operations, and developing and implementing plans to enable those systems and operations to resume following a disaster or other emergency situation.


Cooking the books

A term used to describe the practice of altering or fudging accounting numbers and records during or subsequent to an audit.



Protects owners of visual or written materials with the exclusive legal right to control the copying, adaptation, publishing, performing, broadcasting and sale of literary, dramatic, musical or other works of an artistic nature.


Corporate citizenship

Corporate citizenship is the contribution a company makes to society through its core business activities, its social investment and philanthropy programs, and its engagement in public policy. The manner in which a company manages its economic, social and environmental relationships and the way it engages with its stakeholders (such as shareholders, employees, customers, business partners, governments and communities) has an impact on the companys long-term success. ( World Economic Forum)

The term is also used interchangeably with other similar terms such as corporate governance and/or corporate social responsibility.


Corporate culture

The beliefs, values and practices adopted by an organization that directly influence employee conduct and behavior.


Corporate governance

A set of processes, customs, policies, laws and institutions affecting the way a corporation is directed, administered or controlled.


Corporate image

The way in which an organization is viewed by clients, employees, vendors or the general public.


Corporate social responsibility

A concept that corporations have an obligation to consider the interests of customers, employees, shareholders, communities and the environment in all aspects of their business operations.


Corporate values

The prescribed standards, behaviors, principles or concepts that an organization regards as highly important.



The extent or degree to which two variables are related.


Cost-benefit analysis

A means of measuring the costs associated with a specific program, project, activity or benefit compared to the total benefit or value derived.


Cost center

A separate cost accounting unit charged with providing a method of isolating and tracking costs as a means to enhance management controls by identifying responsibility for various expenses.


Cost of goods

Direct costs associated with producing a particular product or service.


Cost of goods sold (COGS)

The cost of buying raw materials and producing the merchandise a company sells.


The direct and indirect costs that are calculated to measure the costs associated with filling a vacancy. Direct costs include, but are not limited to, advertising, employment agency fees, job fairs, employee referrals, credit and reference checking costs, examination and testing costs during the selection process, signing bonuses, relocation costs, HR overhead costs, college recruiting costs, internet costs, and training and communication costs. Indirect costs can include, but are also not limited to, lower productivity, costs of turnover, morale implications, safety (if there is a higher number of accidents as a result of the vacancy), disruption of regular business functions, overtime (to compensate for the vacancy), and hiring to maintain production.


Cost-to-complete information

Includes the costs of finishing certain projects currently underway that may be affected by economic influences such as inflation, higher interest rates or increased labor costs.


Credit rating

The default risk assessment and rating of corporate bonds.


Crisis management

The practice of implementing organization-wide policies and procedures containing pre-established guidelines for responding to catastrophic events or tragedies (i.e., fire, earthquake, severe storms, workplace violence, kidnapping, bomb threats, acts of terrorism, etc.) in a safe and effective manner.


Crisis planning

A formal written plan establishing specific measures or actions to be taken when responding to catastrophic events or tragedies (i.e., fire, earthquake, severe storms, workplace violence, kidnapping, bomb threats, acts of terrorism, etc.) in the workplace.


Crisis prevention

The process of an organization implementing specific plans and procedures designed to circumvent certain disasters or emergencies.


Criterion-referenced measurement

Measurement that provides data on the extent which a particular objectives or criteria are achieved.


Critical success factors

The key items that must be met in order to successfully achieve a specific objective.


Cultural differences

The diverse behaviors, beliefs, customs, traditions, language and expressions that are characteristic to groups of people of a particular race, ethnicity or national origin.


Cultural determinism

The belief that all behavior is shaped by culture. This position ignores other possible factors such as political, economic or biological reasons.


Cultural imperialism

The belief that ones culture is right and others are wrong.


Cultural integration

The process of bringing people of different racial or ethnic backgrounds into equal association.


Cultural relativism

The belief that right or wrong is determined by ones culture and there are no universal principles of right or wrong across borders.



The shared values, understandings, assumptions and beliefs held by members of a certain group or society that produce the norms that shape the behavior of people in that group.


Current assets

Assets that can be rapidly converted into cash.


Current debt

The total of all financial obligations or liabilities due within one year from the statement date.


Current liabilities

Debts incurred by a business in normal day-to-day operations, due within one calendar year.


Current ratio

All of a companys current assets divided by all current liabilities.



Using Web sites, listservs, chat rooms or bulletin boards to post insulting or defamatory statements regarding former employers.


Cyclical stock

A companys stock that is vulnerable to business cycles and whose performance is solidly tied to the state of the economy.

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