The performance of companies is the major driving force behind the wealth of nations. This book examines how the external environment of companies influences their performance, either directly or via its impact on management strategy. The main focus of the book is the external factors which affect company performance. These include: the structure of ownership, corporate governance and the financial environment; the structure of the product market and the intensity of competition; the labour market environment - trade union power and labour market legislation. Also considered are the areas of management strategy most directly affected by the external environment of companies, such as the organization of the company, its investment strategy, the human resource strategy and production control.