There is much agreement by many economists, observers, and thinkers that the British economy needs a fundamental reshaping. With a private debt to GDP ratio of 950%, a financial sector debt ratio of 600%, and a difference of €31,000 per capita GDP average difference between London and the poorest region in the UK; our reliance on the City and financial / professional services is not sustainable or healthy.
UK businesses tripled their indebtedness in only two decades from 38% of GDP (1987) to 118% in 2009. So we have an economy driven by the city, who use money as the “medium of exchange rather than the store of value”; fuelled by a maniacal use of debt to leverage ‘growth’ that resulted in obscene and arguably undeserved ‘performance incentives’.
We have businesses where the average life of a FTSE 250 CEO is 4 years focused on returning ‘shareholder value’ for shareholders who measure value by the quarter rather than the decade.
We have politicians who only talk debate, regulate, and drive policy for the bow of the ship; with a view of success as defined by the next election victory.
A simple question; but if it is agreed that we need a better more sustainable model for the economy that reduces the inequality of capitalism, gets young people into jobs, allows the older generations to work for as long as they want to, and creates long term generational value — who is incentivised to take the long view?
Who will be measured by the 25 year journey to drive a different type of education, schooling, manufacturing, regulation, and society that stops the short term, selfish pursuit of today?
As long as individual earnings, success, and value is misaligned to the needs of the economy, society, and business — nothing will change.
A view states that the only thing that might create a longer and less selfish view; is an appeal to the individual love for our children. Would we make fundamental changes to create a different generational legacy for our little ones?
To reverse this ship and change direction requires vision, communication, commitment, and selflessness. To cut across politics, greed, consumerism, race, creed and tribe – lets do it for our children and grandchildren.