Monday, May 27, 2013

What is Intellectual Capital?, part 2

By Pascal Dennis

In an earlier blog, I suggested that, in the age of Apple, Facebook and Google, Intellectual Capital was at least as important is financial & physical capital.

If you agree, then our annual People Plan is as important as our Financial Plan.

What's the nature & current condition of our IC?

Does our IC match the needs of our Strategy?

What are our 'hot spots' with respect to IC?

How do we, as a management team, develop a shared understanding of our IC hot spots?

How do we grow our people so as to address our hot spots?

Difficult questions, which take time & skill to pose, let alone understand.

The best companies intuit such questions, and actively manage IC.

(Lean thinkers will remember Toyota's cornerstone: Respect for People.)



But these trail-blazers are still a small minority. We need to extend their insights & practices in the years to come.

Why is it so important to manage Intellectual Capital?

Because only thus you can prosper in high cost economies like Europe, America, Canada, Australia, Singapore etc...

Only by investing wisely in your people can you compete with low-cost competitors.

We have enough data points. The best companies in Germany, Switzerland, Denmark, Sweden and such out-compete their low-cost rivals by a wide margin.

China has a massive trade deficit with, wait for it, Switzerland...

Managing Intellectual Capital will be an on-going theme here.

Best,

Pascal

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