Many organizations work to achieve objectives other than profit. For example, universities, many hospitals, government agencies, not-for-profit organizations, and social entrepreneurs play important roles in making our economy work and our society a better place to live. These organizations do not measure their success in terms of profit rates, but they still use many of the tools of strategic management to help them succeed. For these organizations, success might be measured using tangible outcomes such as the number of degrees granted, patient health and satisfaction measures, people served, or some other measure of an improved society.
The primary source of a company’s competitive advantage can come from several areas of its operations. For example, the diamond company De Beers has an advantage that comes from paying lower costs for its diamonds than other companies do, because De Beers owns its own
above-average profits Returns in excess of what an investor expects from other investments with a similar amount of risk.