Can we afford to be “Swiss” in the global market?

There has been a commotion when the Swiss public decided that they would like to “re-negotiate the bilateral EU-contract”.  We have received a lot of bad press for that decision and as you probably know I am not in favor of this popular vote. We have to remind ourselves that the globalization is not reversible. It is a reality. We have to learn to live in it and navigate through the challenges.

Even if in a Marketing effort we claim the “Swiss-ness” of products and even if our tourism relies on a few stereotypes about the Swiss this is not necessarily true for the rest of the economy. In my view we should rely on the Swiss virtues such as reliability, stability and long-term relationships to work our way through this market.

It also is becoming more and more important that you develop your global competency if you want to work in this market or in an international firm. No matter in which line of work you are you will be confronted with intercultural differences be it in hospitals, international firms or in traditional small and medium-sized companies.

Playing on the “Swiss-ness” factor might be helpful but we have to be careful that we do not scare foreigners and foreign investors off. On a day like today where on my commute I meet businessmen from across the globe on their way to the Basel watch and jewellery fair, I am aware that we are on the right track. Let’s not destroy it by being narrow-minded and driven by the fear factor. Switzerland is #1 in so many ways (productivity, quality of life, work opportunities). Let’s try to keep it this way.

 

 

 



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