Future-proofing business is down to its managers, not the government.
Future-proofing business is down to its managers, not the government. PrettyVectors

Bracing for change key to proofing the economy

A PULL quote did what it was supposed to and piqued my curiosity while flicking through the latest issue of Popular Mechanics (believe me, it's a great publication). It was talking about drones and regulations and it said something along the lines of "ambition always outpaces regulation, but if no one invents a flying car, regulators will never be forced to regulate for one".

Some anticipate the effects really well and even lead the new charge. Those that don't, more often than not, expect a government handout, or in plain English, taxpayers to foot the bill.

How true! Either push the boundaries of invention (or reinvention) and explore new unregulated frontiers, or sit there doing the same ol' thing within the guidelines until you drop off the business radar.

We all know organisations that keep up with change prosper, and those who don't, well, don't - it's a cruel but inevitable fact of business.

And if you feel like you've been left behind, don't fret. Plenty of big wigs were caught off guard too and are still trying to play catch up - I work for a newspaper so have first hand knowledge of this approach - while other industries just go and spit the dummy - taxi!

The hotel industry is feeling the force of home owners cashing in thanks to their spare room and the rise of Airbnb, while the standard practice of accessing online services now means companies no longer need to rent an office space or hire staff in order to service your needs.

As technology continues to rocket ahead, and safe-old industries get massive shake-ups, some anticipate the effects really well and even lead the new charge. Those that don't, more often than not, expect a government handout, or in plain English, taxpayers to foot the bill. You have to wonder whether this approach is really going teach us anything as far as long term thinking goes?

While the nuances of individual cases of businesses going bust are varied in their impacts on communities and individuals, the overriding fact is that certain industries we see today are destined for Doomsville.

Planning for that day is the responsibility of all industries and businesses; there's no time for sticking heads in sand and singing la la la la or in the case of the more sinister operators, pilfering the reserves for their own pockets (and their wives and children) and leaving the staff destitute when it all goes pear-shaped.

So what do we have in place for the day all mining in this country ceases, when the environment is finally put first (or we'll die)?

What about right now?

The climate continues to disappoint food producers as it always has, but it's only going to get worse. Is there serious anticipation given for these reoccurring seasonal changes?

What about factory workers and accountants (and reporters) who could be replaced by computers in no time at all. You hear a little bit of chatter about this but then it goes away, like it's for the next generation to contend with.

I don't think so.

I'll go as far as putting my Nostradamus goggles on and say there are going to be massive shake-ups to come in everything from junk food and environmental embarrassments like plastic bags and disposable nappies to outsourcing work and the way we get around.

And while cars may not fly just yet, they will be running on electricity supplied by the sun, so maybe start thinking about being a passive energy technician before you take up that accountancy degree.



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