6 Quotes from Top Business Leaders and their Sociological Meaning

books billionaires GIF by Product Hunt

Top business leaders may not be social scientists and sociologists but their long journey to success and experience in building their empires have given them some sociological wisdom and theories in their minds on what works or fails in the field of business. They may not have articulated exactly the type of theories and insights they use in the quotes, but they are nevertheless very sociological and empirical from a sociologist’s point of view. Let us examine and analyze sociologically the following quotes from well-known global business leaders:

Image result for quotes from top business leaders

This quote emphasizes that media business needs visionary leaders. In sociology, the type of leader with vision is usually the charismatic leader. The German sociologist Max Weber basically classifies leaders into 3 types: Charismatic, Traditional, and Rational-Legal. The charismatic leader is one with extraordinary talents and personal traits. His talent includes a vision of the future.

It is proven that today’s great business leaders are people who think and see ahead of their times. They have the talent to spot opportunities which ordinary entrepreneurs cannot see. Charismatic leaders are creative and innovative people who are willing to break traditions just to actualize their visions. Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, and Jack Ma, to name a few, are examples of charismatic business leaders. In contrast, the traditional leader is usually a conservative person who only follows the tradition and culture of what is handed down from the past to the firm, while the rational-legal leader is one leads only to the laws and policies of the company.

Photo Credit: azquotes.com

Image result for quotes from top business leaders

This quote emphasizes that the customer is the ultimate boss in business. Without customers, the business cannot survive and grow. The resources and capital of the business firm must be used wisely to serve the customers. Managers have no business in the company if they cannot provide the best products and services to the customers.

Photo Credit: rdcooperr.us

Image result for quotes from top business leaders

This quote stresses that one must take risks in business but only if it is a good cause, if it can lead to a good life, presumably for the customers and the public. A business firm and its leaders cannot takes risks if what they do are contrary to law, custom, and needs of the public. It cannot engage in shady deals and corruption just to increase its profit.  Some companies, for instance, pollute rivers by dumping their wastes at the expense of the inhabitants and environment.

Photo Credit: Pinterest.com

Image result for quotes from top business leaders

Bill Gates may not be a sociologist, but he knows that life is not equal. It is part of urban society’s social stratification where people are classified according to wealth or social class and according to their skills and level of education or social status. In a capitalist society, the social structure always favors and rich and entrepreneurs, while the poor and workers are oftentimes exploited and forgotten.

Photo Credit: danieldigest.com

Image result for jack ma quotes

This is a very good observation by Jack Ma. Not many people can see that complaints are actually gaps in the system and opportunities for the business firm to grow and even create new products and services to address them.

Image result for jack ma quotes

Jack Ma, because of his vision and long experience in business, is correct. The right people for the job or task in the company are not necessarily the best ones. The best people are actually difficult to train in the company. They usually have a strong sense of entitlement. They tend to be good at commanding rather than obeying people who know the needs and problems of the company. That is why, aside from the necessary qualification, the employees must possess the right attitudes, values, and personalities which are consonant with the company’s mission-vision. A business firm is a system with interdependent parts and functions. It requires a teamwork. If the firm hires the best people rather than the right employees, it can result in disharmony and systemic dyfunction which are not good for business.

Thank you for reading this post. Subscribe or follow this blog for more updates.

Web Hosting

Top 5 Biblical Passages for Christian Business Leaders

pray jesus christ GIF

1. Mark 10:43-45

“But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be the slave of all. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

This passage from the Gospel of Mark is considered the central image of a Christian leader– a suffering servant. A leader who serves his/her constituents rather than being served by them. Leadership in the Christian sense is service for the sake of the Kingdom and self-emptying to empower others.

Under this model, the leader does not seek glory and power for his/her self but to promote and protect the common good even if this entails dying to one’s self and disregarding his/her self-interest.

In Catholic Church’s teaching, doing business is a form of service to God and people–the customers. Its ultimate goal is not really profiteering but serving the public by providing consumers with high-quality goods and services in order that they can enjoy the fruits of God’s creation.

serving we are GIF by Green Valley Community Church

A good and Christian leader must then strive to become a servant of God in the business organization, providing the public with quality goods and services.

As managers, they must not abuse their discretionary powers in the workplace but instead empower others to become servants and leaders too in their respective duties and areas of responsibilities.

2. Philippians 2:3

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves..”

This passage from the Letter of Paul to the Philippians can remind business leaders not to seek selfish ambitions or vain conceit. They must be humble, always conscious that positions of power in the business organization is temporary and meant for service.

Selfish ambition or conceit in the business organization can lead to unhealthy competition, politics, and sidelining of the corporate values just to get ahead of others in the promotion system.

grow up trump GIF by Interstellardesignz

3. 1 Timothy 3:2

happy well done GIF by Expo Pass

Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach…”

This passage reminds business leaders to walk the talk, to witness what they preach in the workplace. A good and Christian leader is one who always provides a good example for others to follow.

angry d&d GIF by Hyper RPG

4. Proverbs 27:23-24

jesus wink GIF

“Be sure you know the condition of your flocks, give careful attention to your herds;  for riches do not endure forever, and a crown is not secure for all generations.”
Business leaders must not be only conscious about their position of power and authority, of the benefits and rewards they could get if they perform well in the company.
They must, first of all, know the real conditions of their employees in the workplace. They should check whether they are properly remunerated with a just wage by the company.
Corporate productivity is often tied up with the level of satisfaction of the workers with their wage and social benefits.
derek jeter leadership GIF by Fast Company

5. Isaiah 41:10

fearless lil kim GIF by VH1 Hip Hop Honors

“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

In Church’s teachings, work is connected with one’s spirituality: A leader’s duty and role in the company must be part of his/her spiritual life.

informing kyle broflovski GIF by South Park

A Christian leader is one who is always conscious that the work of managing others in the workplace is part of his/her quest for salvation. Sanctification is not only expressed inside the Church but anywhere since God’s presence is everywhere. Thus, if business leaders are always aware of God’s presence in the workplace, he/she would never be fearful in his decisions and actions.

preacher convincing GIF by South Park

GIF Credits: Giphy.com

Thanks for reading this post. Subscribe or follow via email for more updates.

 

Top 5 Biblical Passages for Christian Business Leaders

pray jesus christ GIF

1. Mark 10:43-45

“But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be the slave of all. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

This passage from the Gospel of Mark is considered the central image of a Christian leader– a suffering servant. A leader who serves his/her constituents rather than being served by them. Leadership in the Christian sense is service for the sake of the Kingdom and self-emptying to empower others.

Under this model, the leader does not seek glory and power for his/her self but to promote and protect the common good even if this entails dying to one’s self and disregarding his/her self-interest.

In Catholic Church’s teaching, doing business is a form of service to God and people–the customers. Its ultimate goal is not really profiteering but serving the public by providing consumers with high-quality goods and services in order that they can enjoy the fruits of God’s creation.

serving we are GIF by Green Valley Community Church

A good and Christian leader must then strive to become a servant of God in the business organization, providing the public with quality goods and services.

As managers, they must not abuse their discretionary powers in the workplace but instead empower others to become servants and leaders too in their respective duties and areas of responsibilities.

2. Philippians 2:3

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves..”

This passage from the Letter of Paul to the Philippians can remind business leaders not to seek selfish ambitions or vain conceit. They must be humble, always conscious that positions of power in the business organization is temporary and meant for service.

Selfish ambition or conceit in the business organization can lead to unhealthy competition, politics, and sidelining of the corporate values just to get ahead of others in the promotion system.

grow up trump GIF by Interstellardesignz

3. 1 Timothy 3:2

happy well done GIF by Expo Pass

Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach…”

This passage reminds business leaders to walk the talk, to witness what they preach in the workplace. A good and Christian leader is one who always provides a good example for others to follow.

angry d&d GIF by Hyper RPG

4. Proverbs 27:23-24

jesus wink GIF

“Be sure you know the condition of your flocks, give careful attention to your herds;  for riches do not endure forever, and a crown is not secure for all generations.”
Business leaders must not be only conscious about their position of power and authority, of the benefits and rewards they could get if they perform well in the company.
They must, first of all, know the real conditions of their employees in the workplace. They should check whether they are properly remunerated with a just wage by the company.
Corporate productivity is often tied up with the level of satisfaction of the workers with their wage and social benefits.
derek jeter leadership GIF by Fast Company

5. Isaiah 41:10

fearless lil kim GIF by VH1 Hip Hop Honors

“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

In Church’s teachings, work is connected with one’s spirituality: A leader’s duty and role in the company must be part of his/her spiritual life.

informing kyle broflovski GIF by South Park

A Christian leader is one who is always conscious that the work of managing others in the workplace is part of his/her quest for salvation. Sanctification is not only expressed inside the Church but anywhere since God’s presence is everywhere. Thus, if business leaders are always aware of God’s presence in the workplace, he/she would never be fearful in his decisions and actions.

preacher convincing GIF by South Park

GIF Credits: Giphy.com

Thanks for reading this post. Subscribe or follow via email for more updates.

Profit, Corruption, and Red Tape in Doing Business in the Philippines

Money Euro Wash Bills Economy Exchange Bro

Hiring and Profit in the Philippines

Textbooks and courses on business administration, management, and entrepreneurship with their emphasis on attaining business forecast and maximizing profit always imply that productive capital in doing business (such money, stocks, land, equipment, machinery, etc.) is a priority over labor (or workers’ welfare).

The common practice of some businesses is to sacrifice the wage and benefits of workers to lower production cost and thus attain their forecast and earn higher profit levels. This indicates a capitalist thinking which gives more importance to productive capital rather than labor. One unfair labor practice that shows this priority of the growth of capital rather than labor is the “casualization” of labor in developing countries like the Philippines.

To lower labor cost in order to increase profit is the hiring of casual workers from agencies with work contracts with less than six months to prevent employees to become regular or permanent under the Philippine Labor Code and thus save money by not spending for their social benefits. This practice indicates that businessmen/women are not really more concerned with the welfare of the workers by providing them permanent jobs and sufficient social benefits in the name of Christian charity and social justice but with the increase of profit or capital for their business.

The hiring of students as casual crew in fast-food chains rather than permanent employees is another example of this “casualization” and prioritization of capital over labor. The hiring of employees in security agencies, janitorial services, and call centers in the Philippines follows this trend of contractualization of labor.

Corruption and Doing Business in the Philippines

Money Laundering Crime Fighting Crime Prev

Entrepreneurs who want to earn the profit for their business could be totally faulted if they fail to provide a moral wage which is sufficient to raise a family. From the point of view of business owners and managers, one important reason why they tend to lower the wage of workers in the Philippines is the high cost of doing business in the country. To maintain, expand or to stay profitable in business, entrepreneurs are sometimes pressured to lower the labor cost.

Bureaucracy Files Tax Consultant Figure Fu

Corruption is another expense in business. In Transparency International surveys, the Philippines has consistently been listed as among the most corrupt countries in Asia and in the world. Business owners and managers want to recovery the bribes they gave to corrupt government regulators and law enforcers often find ways to reduce production cost. And most often they resort to minimizing the wage and benefits of their employees. The capacity of employers to provide a decent wage to their workers is sometimes conditioned by the overall environment of doing business in a particular country.

Analysis, Magnifying Glass

A World Bank report on the cost of doing business in 2018 revealed that the Philippines is one of the most unattractive destinations of foreign investment in the world because of the delay and high cost of starting and doing business in the country. In general, doing business in the country is tedious, time-consuming, and expensive, making it difficult for employers to be generous to their workers in wage and social benefits.

Red Tape

Lobbying Blackmail Business Consultation C

Red tape is one major reason why employers incur higher expenses in doing business resulting which can sometimes reduce their capacity to give a higher wage and social benefits to their workers. Research and theory have been inconsistent and ambiguous on the nature of “red tape”. But there is  an understanding that red tape has something to do with excessive or meaningless paperwork  (Bennett & Johnson, 1979); a high degree of formalization and constraint (Hall, 1968); unnecessary rules, procedures and regulations; inefficiency; unjustifiable delays; and as a result from all this, frustration and vexation (Bozeman 1993, p. 273).

Bureaucracy Aktenordner Paperwork Office W

Rosenfeld (1984) defines red tape as the sum of government guidelines, procedures, and forms that are perceived as excessive, unwieldy, or pointless in relation to official decisions and policy (as cited in Bozeman, 1993, p. 276). Theories abound why red tape exist in government regulation. But one popular theory sees the concern of the government to create a system of checks and balances in the regulatory process in order to avoid corruption and deviation from the official law as causing red tape.

Taxes, Tax Evasion, Police, Handcuffs

Red tape is one of the more serious bureaucratic obstacles in addition to legal obstacles in the full legalization of business in the local economy.  With numerous unnecessary paper works, bureaucratic requirements and procedures, and  unexplained delays in securing business registration, licenses and permits as well as  compliance with the yearly requirements and inspections to maintain legality in business,  traders or entrepreneurs increase their cost of maintaining their business which, in turn, can discourage them to improve the wage of their employees. Thus, the Philippines is one most difficult countries to do business in Southeast Asia as well as in the world according to the  World Bank Report on the ease of doing business in the world.

Photo Credit: Pixabay.com

Intellectual Property: The Currency of Today’s Global Trade

motorcycle-1515873__340

1. Intellectual Property and Global Trade

If the currency of the old capitalist social order is gold, the new currency of the new informational capitalism is said to be IP, that is, ownership of ideas, industrial designs, trademarks, copyright and other creative products and services based on human creativity and innovation. “Creativity, in the form of ideas, innovations, and inventions, has replaced gold, colonies, and raw materials as the wealth of nations” (Warshofky, 1994).

shield-167584__340

Innovation, both at the individual and group level, has been increasingly acknowledged by many as the true wealth of nations in the 21st century: “The creative economy has become a powerful transformative force in the world today and one of the most rapidly growing sectors of the world economy, not just in terms of income generation but also for job creation and export earnings (UNESCO & UNDP, Creative Economy Report, 2013, p.15). A greater proportion of the world’s intellectual and creative resources are now being invested in culture-based and IP-intensive industries. The concept of intellectual property which was used to be a specialist, an arcane subject has now moved center stage in the economy.

2. Types of Intellectual Property (IP)

2.1 Copyrights are creative works that have been fixed in a tangible form.

copyright-1700172__340

2.2 Patents are grants from the government that give you exclusive rights over your invention for a specific amount of time, in exchange for full disclosure.

technology-2396670__340

2.3 Trademarks are words, symbols, colors, sounds, or smells that someone is using in conjunction with a product or service.

rolls-royce-1314409__340

2.4 Trade secrets are secret information used by a business that derives its value from being secret, and where the business is invested in protecting that secrecy.

profit-599504__340

2.5 Right of publicity is defined as your right to control how your name, likeness, and persona are used by others.

3. US Control of the Global IP Economy

flag-1189866__340

        The American monopoly of the IP trade did not arise instantly. It started gradually with the leading role of U.S. IP industries in creating a new IPR regime in the U.S. economy which soon projected on a worldwide scale in the 1980s with the opening of economies of developing countries through free trade and reduction and elimination of tariffs in the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), a multilateral agreement signed by 110 countries around the world. Countries who signed this agreement also agreed to the creation of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and to GATT’s  Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights agreement (TRIPS), a multilateral agreement which requires member countries to protect IP goods and services from counterfeiting and piracy. Historically, the U.S. was the first country to realize how greatly its economy depends on IP as a source of national income and employment.

Today, practically almost all sectors of the US economy rely on some form of IP, because virtually “every industry either produces it or uses it” Thus, as early as the 1970s when the world was reeling from OPEC’s oil price increases, the U.S. first saw the need of new foreign policy for IP, for the ownership of ideas that suit American interest (Warshofsky, 1994).  From 1970s to early 1990s, there was a widespread belief that the US economy had declined and overtaken by Japan and that this decline can only be halted by a renewed emphasis on technological innovation to stimulate economic growth (Landes & Posner, 2003, p. 2). The promotion and protection of American IP exports gradually emerged as the most viable response to this decline. Riker (2012) explained that there are strong indications that improvements in IPR protection in U.S. export markets could increase export revenues and income from direct investment abroad, increase royalties from licensing U.S. knowledge capital, or from  a combination of these three (p. 288).

protected-267353__340

With this realization, the U.S. government shifted its economic focus from the traditional manufacturing and exportation of “hard” and “heavy” goods to “soft” and “liquid” goods and services of the creative economy which fit into the current globalizations trends characterized by “liquidity” and mobility of things (Ritzer, 2010). While China was busy converting its centrally-planned economy into a market economy  in the mid-1980s, the U.S. was preoccupied with harnessing its creative economy during this period, laying the foundation of a new economic infrastructure based on human innovation and IP.

        To protect and accelerate the growth of this new-found “gold” in the U.S. economy,  the  government, influenced by the intense and sustained corporate lobbying of top IP pharmaceutical multinationals, gave IP protection a special legislative push. Since the 1980s, the U.S. Congress introduced a series of legal reforms and innovations in IPR to curb piracy and counterfeiting at home and abroad. As a result, the profitability of American IP companies grew rapidly. Between 1987 and 1999, for instance, a period of only twelve years, the annual U.S. receipts from foreign IP trade rose from $10 billion to 36.5 billion. American exports in high technology goods such as computers and electronic products amounted to $190 billion out of the total exports of $690 billion (28%) (Landes & Posner, 2003, p.3). The supremacy of IP in the US economy became apparent in when nearly 61% of American exports, $775 billion, come from IP-intensive industries in 2010.

        The export of copyright-based industries such as films and computer software also increase with $89 billion in 2001. With sustained efforts of the U.S. government to protect U.S. goods and services from counterfeiting, the dramatic growth of IP trade at home and abroad continued to intensify in early 2000s (Landes & Posner, 2003 p. 3). In 2010, the total merchandise exports of the US IP-intensive industries has already reached a staggering $775 billion, accounting for 60.7 percent of total U.S. merchandise exports and for 40.0 million direct and indirect jobs or 27.7 percent of all jobs in the U.S.  But in 2012, the IIPA estimated that the value added by the core copyright industries to U.S. GDP exceeded $1 trillion dollars ($1,015.6 billion) for the first time, accounting for 6.48% of the U.S. economy and the value added by the total copyright industries to GDP exceeded $1.7 trillion ($1,765 billion), accounting for 11.25% of the U.S. economy (Siwek, 2012, p.2).

        In the realm of patents, the U.S. IP industries also showed dominance in the U.S. economy. In patent medicine, four (7) out of the top ten (10) pharmaceutical companies in the world are American multinationals with Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer occupying the top spots with revenues of US$61.9 billion and US$50.01 billion respectively.. In computer technology, the U.S. is overtaking other countries in terms of inventions in computer products and applications. The global leader in technology patent, the International Business Machines (IBM), for instance, has been a consistent number one patent creator in the world for a long time, amassing more U.S. patents than any other companies in the last 21 years. In 2013 alone, it created a total of 6, 809 patents, with more than 30% of these came from overseas.

         The significant contribution of the IP industries to the U.S. economy has pushed the  U.S. government to prioritize IPR protection at home and abroad in order to curb counterfeiting and piracy of American IP products. The strengthening of IPR protection abroad aims to build a global IP legal regime which makes it difficult for counterfeiters and infringers to hijack the exports of U.S. IP multinational companies (MNCs), the new key drivers of the American economy. The grand scheme of the U.S. includes the global institutionalization of the TRIPS and its own version of IPR protection  which can dominate its top economic competitors and leading IP counterfeiters such as China, Brazil, India and Russia, and other piracy-laden ASEAN countries. To achieve this end without manifest opposition from developed and developing countries around the world, the U.S. has to use a consensual power judiciously in the diplomatic front through the cultural institution of law as a mechanism to shield its hegemonic agenda of dominating the global IP trade as well as to project an image that the American-style of IPR protection serves the economic interest of all nations in the world.

Photo Credits: Pixabay.com

Thank you for reading this post. Subscribe or follow this blog for more updates.