Monday, December 14, 2009

2 weeks before 2010: The governing dynamics (Europe, UK, US, world)

1) In discussions, one often hears views by those who claim to be more in touch with reality than others because they are "swimming" everyday in a volatile "ocean"at work and daily life. They think that being in the eye of the storm better equips them to capture what is real and what is thoery or perception. Yet, IMO, in this just-in-time fast paced world how many of them also have the time and energy to capture the full reality of Reality rather than just a piece of it (at best)?

2) What is the key factor or parameter or cause of the uber volatility and almost not fit for humans pace of our times? Is it globalization?
IMO the key driver (and problem) of our era is not "globalization" per se, but the just-in-time method in production & logistics. And it needs a rethink by those who seek to change the fundamental causes of many of the problems of our era.

And to paraphrase a common phrase re The Truth: Reality? You cannot/could not handle reality! You would not know it even if it hit you in the face (actually, reality does hit most people in the face today, like a headwind, and forces them to close their eyes to the horizon).

3) In any period, but especially these days, revenue creation is a crucial function of any "economic activity" be it profit or non-profit in nature. Yet. consider how sales management and business development are under-valued business administration disciplines: Back in my business school days, one studied micro and macro economics, financial and management accounting, Finance, Marketing, Human Resources Management, MIS and even Strategy. But how many business school offered courses, even as electives, in Sales Management and/or Business Development?

4) And while in the US, President Obama is still trying to convince the Senate and the House, mostly members of his own party, of the need for a public option, and the Senate has passed a sweeping bill of financial sector reforms, but US offer to cut CO2 emissions are ground-breaking by US standards but hardly impressive to the rest of the world, in Europe they are absorbed by trying to decide who is the "winner" in the most recent episode of the British-French "soap-opera". Did the French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who used to be considered by some as the most "AngloSaxon thinking" friendly French President ever, indeed score a major victory over "AngloSaxon Capitalism" via the appointment of a Frenchman, M. M. Barnier, as the Commissioner responsible not only for the Internal (EU) Market and Services but Financial Services as well?

IMO, there is more to Europe than Anglosaxon capitalism and French Colberist interventionism. For example, least 4 "social models".

And while indeed working hard seems to still be a mantra of the American and British way of doing things, how about the "working smart" (Scandic) approach to work? In a "Western World" where no matter how productive or efficient one or a factory or a business is, it is still hard to beat the cost efficiency of those whose pay is 1/10 of theirs.

Not to forget the Danish "flexicurity" approach to socio-economic modeling and policy and its relevance at EU level. A model where companies are almost free to fire employees at will but in return the state (supported by higher than average taxes) takes responsibility for finding the fired workers a job (including possible re-training). One must not forget that Denmark, Sweden and Finland are for years now "tenants" of the highest ranks in many studies on competitiveness of countries/economies around the world.

Thus to paraphrase another well known phrase: Realise this! (and many other pieces of the puzzle).

5) Have a "nice" week. 11 days to Christmas.
Will this shopping season pull the US economy out of the recession for good?

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