The term ‘language management’ has become a widely used expression in the sociolinguistic literature. Originally introduced by Jernudd and Neustupný in 1987, as a novel continuation of the language planning tradition stemming from the 1960/70s, language management along these lines has developed into the Language Management Theory (LMT). A second definition of language management, diverting from LMT, can be found in the work of Spolsky, who treats language management as a theoretical component of the wider concept of language policy. Furthermore, over the past 15 years a number of scholars, particularly from the international management discipline, appear to have taken an interest in language as a variable in business and corporate management. It is also common to refer to this research field as language management. This conceptual article offers a theoretically based comparison of the three definitions of language management, before discussing five main focus points, which may be used to highlight their analytical differences.