Friday, September 24, 2010

Different commercial paradigms

Read this in the WSJ this morning and it spun much thought in me. The article, "GE Chief Slams U.S. on Energy"

Jeff Imelt delivered a blistering attack on his government for the lack of support which all his major competitors are getting. IBM and Cisco who are selling the software for smart grids have an understandably different point of view. Each company is only looking out for its interest sparing no thought for the larger picture or others in the business ecosystem. Big companies like the kind of support Asian governments tend to give their businesses. They love Singapore because this government support them so much better than their home government.

Note that Dr. Steve Chu the Energy secretary hasn't been sitting on his butt. The US labs are working on the problem but not with a view to immediate commercialization which the Chinese are doing.

The future of the US is founded on values and faith, a messy and unpredictable system. Those who have a cognitive need to understand how the future would unfold in their favor before they buy in will take a long time to appreciate and accept this. Ignore the GEs because they envy their foreign competitors. They can easily imagine that they would be a lot more successful with government support. Being born in the USA and not meddling in defense related work, you don't get support.

We all plan especially the best governments in Asia. Japan used to plan a century ahead. This will not work. In real life plans are derailed. Continuous adaptation in an uncertain world is more practical.

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