Business

Businesses must focus on organisational growth, says professor

BY PAUL ALLEN Business reporter allenp@jamaicaobserver.com

Sunday, July 01, 2012    

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COMPANIES need to become increasingly organised if they are to achieve growth and withstand ongoing economic challenges, says an economics professor.

According to Rupert Rhodd, associate economics professor at Florida Atlantic University, a company's success is no longer measured just by what it earns but by a mixture of its prices and responsibilities to clients and society, among other factors.

Oftentimes, a company's achievements are based on government policies which are sometimes ineffective due to lack of support and resources, Rhodd added at the Mona School of Business' Roundtable on organisational growth last week. This, he said, means that businesses will continue to see minimal results if change doesn't come.

The Roundtable, held on the Mona campus of the University of the West Indies, was organised in conjunction with the Sandals Resorts International group, which operates 21 properties in the Caribbean.

The role of the government is to provide employment creation or unemployment reduction, he said, but there are several challenges facing the nation which worsen this task.

Among these challenges are limited opportunities for employment, susceptibility to natural disasters, above average brain drain and difficulty competing globally and attracting foreign exchange.

As such, businesses should look towards organisational growth which helps them to survive market fluctuations, Rhodd said, adding that managers need to do this to also withstand possible external shocks.

This advice comes against the background that Jamaica's economy became more service-oriented over a decade ago and there was a general decline in real sectors as mining, agriculture and manufacturing.

While this shift should have benefited the country, he told business leaders, it didn't do much as an analysis of real gross domestic product will show that Jamaica has had more periods of recession that its major trading partners, the US.

Going forward, the Government should look at non-macroeconomic incentives for stimulating growth of the real sectors with an emphasis on transparency. Additionally, business organisations should balance expectations for revenue growth with resource availability to avoid performance decline.

The MSB Roundtable was staged to help Caribbean leaders make better decisions about organisational growth in all economic sectors to raise people's standard of living.

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