Understanding an executive summary is a very important aspect in a business environment. This is because investors, donors, shareholders, financial institutions and other business partners and stake holders would want to frequently analyze and review the progress of the business. This can only be done well using an executive summary because it gives an overview of the annual report. Going through the whole report maybe a bit hectic and hence the need to have the summary. Teachers, also on the other hand need the executive summary study books in class to act as a representation of the annual reports which they will need to teach their students on how to make them.
An example is given in the Medtronic 2010 – annual report, showing the business progress report for the year ended April 2008, April 2009, and April 2010 consecutively, reviewing this, one can deduce the following: The total current assets for the most recent annual reporting periods were seven million, four hundred and fifty-two thousand dollars ($7,452,000), and nine million, eight hundred and thirty-nine thousand dollars ($9,839,000).
The order of presenting the current assets is that they appear after the expenses and before the liabilities. The totals for the previous financial years are placed besides the current years’ totals for easy computation of the difference. This also helps in evaluating the progress of the business at glance (Medtronic, 2010).
The two largest current assets at the end of its two most recent annual periods are cash (including the cash equivalents), and accounts receivable. The cash was: One million, two hundred and seventy-one thousand dollars ($1,271,000), and three million, one hundred and twenty-three thousand dollars ($3,123,000) respectively for the year ended April 2009. The other one was One million, four hundred thousand dollars ($ 1,400,000) and three million, three hundred and thirty-five thousand dollars ($ 3,335,000) respectively for the year ended April 2010.
The total assets for the company were Twenty-eight million, and ninety thousand dollars ($28,090,000), and twenty three thousand five hundred and eighty eight thousand dollars, for the two consecutive years (that is 2009 and 2010).
With this kind of a summary, it is then very easy for one to have an overview of the company’s or any project’s report in a few minutes. The executive summary study book(s) used in class are therefore a good guide to students on how to build up a business and simplify reports to make them available for the public. The teachers also find it very useful because they can show many examples shown in the books without having to visit individual companies for such examples. The report has a wholesome perception that enables the persons that go through it to have a glimpse of what is happening with the company in all the areas that of concern to the management. The summary that is presented in the report is further an indication that the report has been done in a way that affords a lot of flexibility in the way it presents the data about the performance of the company. Medtronic as a company that has been successful in its management and corporate structures that presents incredible opportunities for its employees through its robust and well outlined corporate culture that is there presenting them with incredible chances of improvement (Medtronic, 2010).
Medtronic. (2010). Medtronic: Innovating for Life Annual Report. Singapore: The Guilford Press.