Message from RG: I’m lounging under a palm tree on a much-needed vacation for a few weeks. So to fill your insatiable need for brilliant and helpful self-development info each morning, I’ve asked some of my clever friends to sit in for me during my absence. Today’s guest blogger is Bob Burg:
It’s always a pleasure to read Randy’s posts on individual prosperity. In this guest post that he was kind enough to ask me to write, I’d like to take a look at prosperity from a societal angle.
Based both on years of study and even more years of experience, I believe that societal prosperity begins with the individual. And, this begins with the rights of the individual being protected by the Rule of Law. For a society (which is – of course – nothing more than simply a large group of individuals) to be abundant, the protection of individual rights must be the highest value of that society, and the understood highest legitimate function of that government.
When individuals are free to create, that’s exactly what they do. At least, enough of them do to create products and services that others need, want or desire. As a result, they hire people, creating jobs.
This begins the creation of both individual and societal prosperity. The more free a country is (i.e., the more that individuals are free) the higher the standard of living for all, including the poor. The less free a country is, the lower the standard of living for all, especially the poor.
If we compare people/countries that are similar in many ways (ethnicity, language, history, proximity) and take only the freedom factor into consideration, we see that the more free, the more prosperous; the less free, the less prosperous.
A few examples include:
North Korea/South Korea
East Germany/West Germany (often called, “The Great Experiment”)
Hong Kong (before free-market)/Hong Kong (after free-market)
Cuba (before Castro)/Cuba (during Castro)
So, what is it that makes a society more prosperous? Liberty. The freedom to create. This is manifested through entrepreneurship. It certainly doesn’t happen through government fiat (decree).
Entrepreneurship – via individuals – is the engine that drives the economy and resulting overall prosperity. And, here’s the great and all-important aspect: in a free-market based economy (not to be confused with Corporatism or Cronyism), one can only become wealthy and abundant by providing value that others are willing to pay for, and by providing that value to many people.
In other words, both parties — the buyer and the seller — come away better off than they were before the transaction. There is no limited “pie” to carve up. When entrepreneurs are free to create value for the marketplace, an unlimited number of pies are “baked.” Everyone wins!
And, this helps the company to stay in business, employ more people who can buy from other companies, helping those companies stay in business, etc., etc. (Yes, true “trickle-down” actually does work despite how often some like to mock it. Like most things, it needs to be looked at in context and not through sound bites.)
What stifles the creation of individual and societal prosperity is the huge amount of red tape and unnecessary regulations. It’s like the “gunk” that slows down a car’s engine. Whether on a federal, state, county or local level, the more needless and counterproductive hoops an entrepreneur must “jump through” in order to get his or her business started and to keep it running – the less incentive they will have to do so. Or simply not be able to make a profit and thus go out of business.
The result: less value provided to others (products or services people want or need), less employment, and less money being circulated throughout the community. Yes, back to that inconvenient “trickle-down” thing again.
Now, is any type of regulation ever necessary? Sure; that which will protect the citizenry from force or fraud.
That aside, no…nothing more is needed. Other than for the politicians and bureaucrats to stay out of the way and let both individual and societal abundance happen.
So, please. Next time you hear a politician — any politician from either party — announce that they have a 50-Point, or 30-Point, or 27-point, or 78-Point Plan for creating jobs, remember this much better plan:
In fact, let’s call it “Bob Burg’s 1-Point Plan For Creating Societal Prosperity.” It goes like this:
Get out of the way politicians and bureaucrats so that entrepreneurs can create jobs!
Naw. Just simple enough. (I’m Bob Burg…and I approved this post)
Bob Burg is coauthor (with John David Mann) of the International Bestseller, The Go-Giver. Visit www.burg.com to check out his blog, and lots of great, value-based information on his site, as well as to connect with him on Twitter and Facebook.