Jump to content

British businessmen


nightrider

Recommended Posts

What do you think of British businessmen? do you think they have any loyalty to this country or are they only concerned with the bottom line? in relocating their operations to third world countries to take advantage of low labour rates and then sell their finished goods back here in the UK at top dollar prices.

I am prompted to send this post in after reading that 91% of olympic souvenirs are being made abroad.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

knight of the road - 2012-02-04 12:07 PM

 

What do you think of British businessmen? do you think they have any loyalty to this country or are they only concerned with the bottom line? in relocating their operations to third world countries to take advantage of low labour rates and then sell their finished goods back here in the UK at top dollar prices.

I am prompted to send this post in after reading that 91% of olympic souvenirs are being made abroad.

 

 

I'd say they are as loyal to Britain as British customers are.

 

Do you only buy goods made in Britain, regardless of price ?

 

 

;-)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Not much chance of buying British when most of the goods are made abroad *-) When my wife was working the company had contracts for the forces and the prison service, they got those contracts on the understanding that the goods were made in Britain, What happened was they would buy in from Asian countries, cut the labels out and re-sew made in Britain tabs. >:-) Look around your house and see what has been made here.

 

Dave

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

malc d - 2012-02-04 12:14 PM

 

knight of the road - 2012-02-04 12:07 PM

 

What do you think of British businessmen? do you think they have any loyalty to this country or are they only concerned with the bottom line? in relocating their operations to third world countries to take advantage of low labour rates and then sell their finished goods back here in the UK at top dollar prices.

I am prompted to send this post in after reading that 91% of olympic souvenirs are being made abroad.

 

 

I'd say they are as loyal to Britain as British customers are.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Do you only buy goods made in Britain, regardless of price ?

 

 

;-)

 

Yes on the whole I do . I see a franch Apple I put it back and look for the English flag . Thats whats wrong with us and then we slate the french armers for blocking the ports haha atleast they look after their own . When in France I dont see British food .

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As a owner of a small business we use local suppliers where possable.....we also work extremely hard

to provide a first class service.

All businesses are here to make a profit....otherwise no point doing it.

Nice to know the goverment support us....NOT. ...Vat....Paye.....Corporation tax....Ni..... which have to be paid in full on time otherwise we face a fine/court proceedings.

 

Not to mention excise duty which is increased every year,....which the producers pass on to us via there pricing structure.

 

We strive to be loyal.

 

And yes the French and other countries look after there own........Shame the british goverment dont do the same.

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

My loyalty is NOT to anyone or anything other than my family.

Yes I will try to buy from GB but not at any price and price is why people buy from elsewhere than GB.

This is rip off britain that we are talking about, everyone is out to rip us off so as far as I am concerned you can shove your loyalty where the sun doesn't shine and expect it to be every man for himself

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest pelmetman
Syd - 2012-02-05 3:15 PM

 

 

My loyalty is NOT to anyone or anything other than my family.

Yes I will try to buy from GB but not at any price and price is why people buy from elsewhere than GB.

This is rip off britain that we are talking about, everyone is out to rip us off so as far as I am concerned you can shove your loyalty where the sun doesn't shine and expect it to be every man for himself

 

Yes the lowest price is the best price.........................besides its far better to keep our Chinese friends in work doing the jobs that we used to ;-).............................Lucky we have the benefit system financed by those few businesses left :D

 

I suppose we can go on forever like this???..........regulating and taxing our businesses into extinction...........or until they all clear of to China *-)...........................and when there's no one left to tax........we can ask our Chinese friends to fund or benefits system (lol) (lol)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Quite agree Syd. What a load of hypocrites we are, we moan about the human rights record of countries like China and then we buy all the products from there. The profits of which the Chinese are using to eventually dominate the world, one way or another. The manufacturers can't wait to get factories over there and cheap labour, then sell the products to us at inflated prices.

Rip off britain it is indeed. >:-)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Britain is a trading nation that has far more influence on world trade than any other country for its size. It will always be cheaper to manufacture in countries with less freedom and human rights we enjoy. I don't think our business men do a bad job, but some of them could do better for less money!

 

Our local Council bought flowers from another part of the country for a special event. There was uproar, "what about the local businesses?". The Council said they would be happy to buy locally if the local businesses could meet their needs. They couldn't.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest pelmetman
Brock - 2012-02-05 5:30 PM

Our local Council bought flowers from another part of the country for a special event. There was uproar, "what about the local businesses?". The Council said they would be happy to buy locally if the local businesses could meet their needs. They couldn't.

 

Or rather they bought the flowers from an importer and cut out their local middle man ;-)................So all the rate payers money went to the importer and abroad *-)

 

Then they wonder why their local shops are disappearing and are now puzzling how they're going to fund their gold plaited pensions (lol) (lol) (lol)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's all about product cycles. We have a work force that has asked for and got (quite rightly) fot better working conditions and pay. We have to realise that if we wanted a pair of trousers or some electrical widgit that was made in UK then you will have to pay for it.

 

UK made clothes fetch a premium.

 

UK built audio such as Naim fetch a huge premium and we export to Japan and indeed world wide

 

http://www.naimaudio.com/

 

China is one of the biggest markets for Jag/LR - one of th reasons is because the Chinese prefer the quality of non-home grown products.

 

So we buy on price - and ever more affluent Chinese buy quality. Which currently is ok for us - but not for long. Because you only have to look at the speed of development within the developing nations to realise that the catch up pretty dmn fast.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

knight of the road - 2012-02-04 12:07 PM

 

What do you think of British businessmen? do you think they have any loyalty to this country or are they only concerned with the bottom line? in relocating their operations to third world countries to take advantage of low labour rates and then sell their finished goods back here in the UK at top dollar prices.

I am prompted to send this post in after reading that 91% of olympic souvenirs are being made abroad.

 

So is all yourgardening equipment British made Malc? What about your woodworking kit?

 

Are you yourself not a British businessman? If you answer yes to that then where does your loyalty lie?

 

D.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

With us the cheapest is definately not what we are looking for, we are looking for the best quality that we can get for what we wish to spend.

Cheapest is not very often the best because you ALWAYS only get what you pay for

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Businessmen (or women! :-)) are not a single, easily identifiable, group of people. So trying to treat them as such is bound to mislead. The real point of this string, it seems to me, concerns globalisation. The idea that production will take place where it is cheapest, and sales will take place where the highest price can be gained.

 

This requires only someone prepared to take the risk of placing his orders in one country, selling his products in another country, and paying for transport, and accepting the exchange rate risks, necessary to bring the goods to market. They used to be called merchants, and they used to be held somewhat in awe. However, as a generalisation, they they to imported the exotic. That is how we gained things like sugar, tea, coffee, cotton, silk, spices, rubber, etc. On the back of those merchant "businesses", we grew others. For example, cotton spinning and weaving. In some cases, like spinning and weaving, the introduction of new, large, factory based, machines forced many small producers out of business. The new factories had taken their livelihoods. They rebelled, they broke the looms, and they were imprisoned or deported, but in almost all cases their small scale production went. Later, we exported the spinning machines and the looms back to the countries that grow the cotton, and imported the finished cloth. So the factories closed, and the workers were made unemployed, and more unrest followed. Later still, we exported the making of the finished products, the clothing, the bed linen etc, to the countries where the cotton grows, and the spinning and weaving factories are located.

 

During all this time what we have done, following much the same logic as those merchants we once admired, is to move from buying in raw materials, to buying in finished goods. To buy cheap, and sell at a premium. To do this we have exported our skills and knowledge, and with them the jobs we used to do, and we have woven many myths about the wonderful people involved. This process has its winners and losers, but generally, those with the means to control production have won, and those who produced have lost. Hitherto, this has not mattered too much, because, despite great hardship being created for some along the way, life in general has improved for most, and alternative jobs were being created in other areas of our economies. Sometimes people had to move home to find work, usually they had to learn new skills, but most people, one way or another, managed.

 

Oversimplified, and maybe over-rosy, but as a very crude and hugely abridged tale, that is roughly how we got where we are as an industrialised, developed, country.

 

However, I think something different is beginning to upset that simple, ongoing tale of exporting, importing, and domestic change. We invented robots to do the manufacturing, and computers to drive them. The man who developed the skill to control the machine is no longer required, the CNC machine has taken his place, and the man who controls that machine is not someone who learns a manual skill, he is someone who is more highly educated, and more numerate, than his predecessor. By degrees, he is becoming the dominant employee, and the man with his skill in his hands, rather than in his head, is becoming less and less employable.

 

I think we are now creating a society in which the manually skilled individual will have little to no place, meaning their standard of living will progressively decline over the longer term, and the relatively unskilled individual will be more or less unemployable. We cannot at present influence the intelligence of our children, they have what they are born with. They can only be educated in ways that they can absorb. Those with the useful attributes will get, possibly create, the good jobs, and so will be able to afford to buy the houses etc that all need. The rest seem to me set for lives of low reward, long hours, and poor living standards. Our economy will diminish, because those earning the good money will be progressively and increasingly overtaken by the growing numbers of those earning low incomes, or with no jobs at all, whose spending will not replace what was previously spent by their more skilled forbears.

 

So, it seems to me that our merchant forbears, who added the exotic to our much more intensively manual lives, and brought us a growing economy, have been replaced, under present circumstances, by similar people doing similar things that now threaten to undermine our collective standards of living. They seem set to create a select, wealthy few, whose wealth relative to the masses will be more akin to that of the C18 aristocracy, while the rest are condemned to life at the level of their servants and retainers, or in some cases, of beggars. I think we face gradual regression until we find ways redress the balance in favour of that portion of our population that used to do those skilled jobs we have exported. Personally, I think those who claim that, as in the past, the new sources of employment will emerge unexpectedly are simply being over-optimistic.

 

I think the reason we attract relatively highly educated immigrants to do jobs our own population does not do, is because we have reached the point at which the jobs now on offer demand levels of education that are beyond the reach of a growing proportion of our population. It is not that we are becoming stupid, just that this world of the increasingly high-tech is inaccessible to people whose intelligence lies in other fields. It leaves us a real, and I think almost irreconcilable, problem that, I think, can only be overcome if we begin to bring back some of the means of production we previously exported. Otherwise, I think I see real division and serious social unrest as the have-nots, begin to realise that they are becoming the never-to-haves, and the haves become the always-will-haves. It can't work like that, can it? Surely the businessman has to begin to wake up to the fact that his present practises weaken the economy that generates his wealth, and that he has to begin to look beyond his bottom line and that, if he wants to be able to sustain his standard of living, he has to have some regard for the standards of living even of those he doesn't directly employ.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Nicely put Brian.

 

I've been telling my 'better half' for years now that all this exporting of manufacturing/services/call centre etc processes to countries of 'cheap labour' will eventually tip the balance in the 'first world' leaving a very large percentage of the populace unemployed and with no prospects. It also means that a great deal of 'western' funds leech out of the national economy leaving 'us' in a huge balance of payments debt which will never be repaid.

 

IMO those in government and positions of influence in industry need to address this as a matter of urgency otherwise it seems inevitable that civil unrest will follow.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Brian - you say:-

 

"Surely the businessman has to begin to wake up to the fact that his present practises weaken the economy that generates his wealth, and that he has to begin to look beyond his bottom line and that, if he wants to be able to sustain his standard of living, he has to have some regard for the standards of living even of those he doesn't directly employ."

 

But surely it is the economic and political situation that governs this? The "Businessman/woman" can not possibly be the one(s) who have "regard" for the standard of living for those outside his influence.

 

Those they employ - well yes - there is an obvious cause and effect. But the main driver is how that firms tax £'s are spent by government. If too little comes back into the business having got lost on silly government projects then that businessman/woman as a Director or Partner has a responcibility to that business and if that mens out-sourcing to another country then so be it.

 

No Country has a monopoly on wealth. Wealth goes where value is greatest.

 

If the UK no longer is able to provide value then business will migrate to somewhere where they can achieve value.

 

The Pharmaceutical Industry is a good example - the UK used to be responcible for nerly 30% of all pharmaceutical research. Now that figure is just 8% and this is due almost entirely to Government restrictions and legislation making the UK less attractive and other countries more so.

 

Astra Zenica's recent decision is another example.

 

t

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest pelmetman
Brian Kirby - 2012-02-06 1:19 PM

Surely the businessman has to begin to wake up to the fact that his present practises weaken the economy that generates his wealth, and that he has to begin to look beyond his bottom line and that, if he wants to be able to sustain his standard of living, he has to have some regard for the standards of living even of those he doesn't directly employ.

 

I agree with a lot of what you say.......but

 

Is it the business mans fault or the customers Brian? ;-)....................its the old chicken and egg conundrum............. businesses who mass produce have had to follow suit in order to compete............

 

As for the manually skilled.................those of us who have found a niche in the market are doing quite nicely thank you....................Niche markets are the secret............... specialize and your hourly rate will go up ;-)

 

My hourly rate would put in the 40% tax bracket 8-)....................but fortunately I'm a lazy b****r so I'm actually classed as a low earner :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Brian,

You are correct in what you say, I dont have your eloquence with words so putting things in my own simple way I would say that some people are getting richer and some people are getting poorer.

Natural progression and automation are putting thousands of people out of work through no fault of their own, yet these people are being hounded by the benefits people to get out and find those none existant jobs on pain of having their benefits stopped.

Everything you buy is going up on a daily basis, petrol, diesel gas electric etc etc the government and councils are scraping the barrel and screwing the populace to the floor.

Elderly drivers are throwing the towel in and selling their vehicles due to the high cost of insurence, young qualified drivers can't even get insurence.

How many people are now registered as unemployed, 2 or 3 million? and of them there are I believe 1 million school leavers? a lost generation who are going to be harbouring resentment that will at some future time result in riots and civil unrest and I very much doubt that the police force will be able to contain things.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

CliveH - 2012-02-06 3:37 PM....................But surely it is the economic and political situation that governs this? The "Businessman/woman" can not possibly be the one(s) who have "regard" for the standard of living for those outside his influence.

 

Those they employ - well yes - there is an obvious cause and effect. But the main driver is how that firms tax £'s are spent by government. If too little comes back into the business having got lost on silly government projects then that businessman/woman as a Director or Partner has a responcibility to that business and if that mens out-sourcing to another country then so be it.

 

No Country has a monopoly on wealth. Wealth goes where value is greatest.............................

If I reply on Clive's post, it is because both Dave and Malcolm have made broadly similar points, not because I am ignoring what they say.

 

First, this is, I think, my take on the idea that has begun to be called "responsible capitalism". If the business pays its staff as well as it can, rather than merely the minimum it can get away with, it is likely the extra will be spent, to the benefit of other local businesses. It is in that sense that the standard of living of others benefits. Enlightened self-interest, rather than narrow self-interest.

 

Dave is right about people finding niches, but I really don't think that will ever provide the solution for everyone. There seems to be a growing number of the unemployed, and the partially employed, at the same time as we draw-in immigrants. It may be argued that is merely because our unemployed are lazy scroungers, and it is plain that some are, but all of them? We are about to add substantially to their numbers by reducing public sector employment. Can they all be niche players?

 

Malcolm is right that the numbers will be swelled yet more by school leavers. Can they too become niche players? Are they too, just lazy scroungers? Certainly, Malcolm seems not to think so.

 

We had the unemployed long before we had the dole, when life was harsh and unemployment meant starvation or the workhouse. Even then, when there were no jobs, people just remained unemployed. They were divided into the deserving, and the undeserving, poor, but even the deserving poor could only get work when it was available. It is too easy, and I would suggest really an highly unjust conscience saver, to tar all the unemployed with the same, lazy, scrounging, brush. Many, I would say most, are not the authors of their own misfortunes, but are the victims of events over which they have no control.

 

Clive says no country has a monopoly on wealth. I think I would instead say no country has a right to monopolise wealth, because from time to time, certain countries do indeed monopolise wealth. What we seem to be discovering at present, is that we are not one of them! :-)

 

Tax levels undoubtedly play a role in this, but my understanding is that our overall levels of taxation are somewhere around the middle of the range, with some countries that enjoy a better economic performance than us paying more in tax, so whereas they must contribute, they cannot be the whole story.

 

I have had this sense of a very slow, very drawn out, economic car crash, for years. We seem to have great industry, great inventiveness, generally good government, good banks and institutions, reasonable levels of education, a health service many still envy, and generally adequate infrastructure. Britain is generally a pleasant, civilised, place to live. Yet, despite those advantages, we have imported more than we exported ever since I can remember, we acknowledge that we tend to a high cost, low wage, economy, we seem slow to capitalise on our own innovations, we suffer relatively low productivity, low levels of investment, indifferent quality, and we think our management is unimpressive. We seem to lunge from boom to bust, as we lurch between two, frequently destructive, political poles. We value "strong governments", but never seem able to see the wasteland their abrupt changes of course have created. We scoff at the "weak" coalitions of other countries, but seem unable to notice they are in fact more consistently stable than our own. Given our advantages, we should be in a far better place than we are. We seem preoccupied with our image, which we spend unrealistic sums seeking to preserve. We love the idea that the Germans lost the war because they couldn't think on the hoof, while we excelled in winging it, when the reality seems to be that we were the ones who actually excelled at managing and controlling our resources. We discuss and debate, we criticise others, and all the time we seem slowly to slip further behind.

 

So, at the end of that long whinge, I think our model of industrial development is what is primarily at fault, because I think what we really suffer from is an over-reliance on our stock market, that imposes short term goals on long term ventures, because it pursues short term returns and, if it can't get them, merely moves on. This creates pressures on accountants to generate profits where none exist, and pressures on boards to manage for immediate shareholder benefit rather than long term business growth. If we can change just one thing, for me, it would be to move away from this espousal of short term goals, and towards a more stable, longer term, version of finance. Others seem able to achieve this, and they seem to prosper rather better than we manage. If we could achieve that, maybe our businessmen would also begin to take a longer view, and we should all benefit.

 

Sorry, bit rushed and not that well constructed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

malc d - 2012-02-04 12:14 PM

 

knight of the road - 2012-02-04 12:07 PM

 

What do you think of British businessmen? do you think they have any loyalty to this country or are they only concerned with the bottom line? in relocating their operations to third world countries to take advantage of low labour rates and then sell their finished goods back here in the UK at top dollar prices.

I am prompted to send this post in after reading that 91% of olympic souvenirs are being made abroad.

 

 

I'd say they are as loyal to Britain as British customers are.

 

Do you only buy goods made in Britain, regardless of price ?

 

As far as possible we do just that.

 

 

;-)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Brian

I find your sophisticated reply a bit heavy on the generalisations

 

"Business people are not a single identifiable group of people"

 

I believe that they are an identifiable group, not by the clothes that they wear, but certainly by the way that they think.

They spend lots of time thinking about how to make their businesses more profitable, where can they purchase more cheaply and where can they sell for a greater profit.

Slowly over many years it has dawned on them that the computer and the internet were the tools to use that having large factories, employing lazy and rebellious workers, collecting taxes for the government, health and safety regulations, business rates and so on no longer cuts the cake and the easier way to profit is to import from countries that have less restrictive practices and so make even larger profits.

The computer represents the same technological step forward that the ludites machines did in the past and has brought great advantages to the working man if only they have the savy to use it and how to use it to improve their lives.

 

Sadly no matter what anyone does there will always be winners and loosers amongst us be that because of brain power or education or simply lack of motivation

 

It's called progress and no one can stop it, having been one who began to realise that they are becoming a never have is I believe what seperates the man from the boys because a man will realise that he has got to do something to get himself out of that class and into the class that he would like to be in

The boys don't do that they are always thinking that tomorrow will bring something better when it won't and so remain loosers

 

The "Merchants" have been, in part, replaced by technology, the internet makes it posible to import from your kitchen table

 

The argument that we should not be sustaining the exploitation of workers overseas begs the question of just what would the exploited workers do for money if they had no work because we took the so called moral high ground

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...