Corporate taxes. The most common way multinationals avoid taxes is through ‘transfer pricing’. Subsidiaries in tax havens buy goods cheaply from connected businesses in more demanding countries and sell them on at a higher price. This process shifts profits to the tax haven. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) is trying to combat schemes of this kind by persuading authorities to require disclosure by firms of where they generate profits and then share the information. Success is not imminent. Outright dodging is an even bigger problem. The Economist has pointed out that undeclared transfers of money, false invoices and the like cost developing countries more than $990 billion in 2012. This figure represents almost 4% of some administrations’ GDP. Maybe helping poorer countries improve tax collection and limit avoidance would do more for growth than targets on financial aid?
Getting things done. This is the test of persistence. Managers tend to confuse hopes, requests and instructions with results. There are five basics: (1) What gets measured gets done – but measure the critical few, avoid the many – when it is broken, fix it fast. (2) What gets budgeted gets done. (3) What gets applauded gets done. (4) What gets rewarded gets done – praise pays, but it does not pay the mortgage – watch out for the middle stealing the idea. (5) What gets reprimanded gets done – keep your cool. BUT, get the ‘mix’ right. All or one becomes counter-productive.
Repetition for sales. 50% of people who authorise purchases for businesses have a change each year in their lives at work. They are promoted or transferred, or might move to another employer or retire into the third age. Things happen to other consumers, too. 20% shift to a new home. And their needs alter as families grow older. All this means they make different buying decisions. Sales and Marketing Executive International suggested 81% of all sales take at least five calls. McGraw-Hill reported first-time sales use seven calls to close an order. So, talk to today’s customers to get more business now. Experience urges you to repeat your offer, benefits, message and call for action – all the time.
Uncomfortable? The Labour Party’s proper members are preparing themselves for a new world. A different universe. Strong signals suggest a new establishment from Saturday 12 September. Jeremy Corbyn MP for Islington North will be leader. The inner circle is likely to include: Diane Abbott MP (Hackney North and Stoke Newington), Richard Burgon MP (Leeds East), John McDonnell MP (Hayes and Harlington), Michael Meacher MP (Oldham West and Royton), Kate Osamor (Edmonton), Cat Smith (Lancaster and Fleetwood), and Jon Trickett (Hemsworth). They are going to be the political centre, will have responsibilities and be part of a management. The ability to pose as outsiders or insurgents will vanish.
But how? ‘Democracy means government by discussion, but it is only effective if you can stop people talking’. Clement Attlee, 1883 – 1967. Prime minister of UK, 1945 – 51.
Prophecy? ‘In the youth of a state, arms do flourish: in the middle age of a state, learning and then both of them together for a time; in the declining age of a state, mechanical arts and merchandise’. Francis Bacon, 1561 – 1626. English writer, philosopher and statesman.