Apparently there is an election on the way.
I have not decided who to vote for yet but Luke Johnson makes some interesting points in his FT blog today. Explaining why he signed up to the Conservative Parties, list of executives who objected to increased taxes, Luke makes the point,
“Unquestionably this is no ordinary election. Britain has suffered 13 years of Labour rule, and the country is in a desperate state. It is like a company slithering towards bankruptcy. And, like any business that has to be turned round, there is one absolute rule to fix the mess: change the management. If there is no transformation at the top, then I fear we could become a bigger version of Argentina in 2001.”
Strong stuff and probably gives some indication of his political leanings.
Martin Leuw, CEO of Iris Software, takes a more balanced view in his blog carried in Real Business, and lists five things that he, as an entrepreneur, employer and wealth creator in the UK would want a government to address, namely:
- “Tax incentives to encourage new venture funding for start-ups/small businesses
- Technology/R&D investment incentives for business to improve efficiency
- Talent/skills development and apprentice schemes for businesses to “future proof” local employment needs
- Measures to make it easier to employ people
- Incentives for exporters”
I think this offers a sane framework for any entrepreneur to evaluate the relative merits of party policies although there also needs to be a clear understanding of how the issue of, ‘slithering towards bankruptcy’, is addressed. I do not believe that the private sector should be made to pay to expand the public sector. The public sector’s share of the UK’s GDP has grown from 38% in 1997 to about 52% today according to Johnson. That is a very sobering thought.
As a final thought though, to win my vote I would strongly prefer a political party to concentrate on articulating their own policies, not attacking the policies of their political opponents. As a business, you should not expect to gain customers just by saying your competitors are bad. Why not tell your prospective customers what you offer that is so good?
Maybe it is just me but every time a political party, or politician, lampoons, satirises, attacks or otherwise criticises their opponents, I think a little less of them. I think they have a little less to say for themselves that is useful and relevant to me and to the future of the country.
Politics is in enough of a mess in this country already. Why don’t you use the election as an opportunity to actually change that and come up with a plan going forward?
A career in politics doesn’t beckon for me. But playing with paint can be illuminating: http://www.alexpoole.name/business/284/sell-me-your-features-not-your-competitions-failings