The Power of Big Business
Forget about governments and politicians. Big corporations have become an unavoidable political, economical and cultural force in today’s globalized world. We have tackled some similar topics in our previous articles The Benefits of Globalization to Your Business and Big corporations vs. Small enterprise. But let’s dig in a little bit deeper in the large corporations’ world and point out some of the key facts which might help you especially if you are asking yourself whether working in a big company is a good idea.
According to some relevant resources (UNESCO – Corporate Power Facts and Stats – from 2000), out of the 100 largest economies in the world, 51 are corporations and 49 countries. With a continuous growth trend of multinational corporations, these statistics are rapidly changing to the benefit of large corporations. Unfortunately, some statistics are not showing such increasing trends and currently the top 200 corporations in the world hire only 0.78% of the world’s workforce, while at the same time consuming over 27% of the world’s economic activity. With such negative statistics, these corporate giants suffer constant critics from various political sides and organizations.
Big business are frequently centers of innovations. With enormous resources, both financial and human, large corporations are usually innovation leaders in many areas. While indeed these innovations are mostly powered by an economic interest, the benefit of those innovations for all people cannot be denied.
Large corporations never come alone and a lot of small businesses benefit from working for or with those giants. The best example for this were transitional periods of some eastern European countries during the 1990s. Wherever large corporations made some investments and stepped in, a big number of medium and small sized companies emerged and benefited from cooperation with them. By increasing the cash flow in certain regions or countries, the opportunity for economic growth naturally rises. This may be a bit harder to notice in the leading economies in the world, yet in some other regions that is easy to determine.
Working in a big company provides a person with better career opportunities. While a risk of losing a job in smaller companies is lower, the opportunity for professional improvement and specialization in certain areas is way higher when working for big players. This is one of the main reasons why a lot of people prefer working for larger corporations. Although not everyone can obviously reach high ranking positions in those large multinational corporations, a sheer possibility fuels large number of employees to work in those environments.
Some futurists predict that in a decade or two, big businesses may start opening their embassies and have their own currencies. While some think this is impossible, some other people see this as a certainty. With a successful expansion of Bitcoin, a P2P currency, who could deny today that in 10 – 15 years some large corporations may not decide to follow that example? In the 1980s, the top 200 companies consumed around 24.2% of the world’s GDP. By the end of the 1990s that number has grown to 28.3% of the world’s GDP. So they certainly do not lack the cash for pushing such a decision through.
Only large corporations can get from planning to mass production quickly due to substantial resources and aggressive marketing strategies. While indeed the size itself doesn’t guarantee success, having all those resources on hand is a huge potential. Contrary to the popular criticism, the world has also seen a lot of cases where those corporate giants were involved in humanitarian work.
With just a couple of topics mentioned and discussed here, we will not try to suggest some definitive answer. The conclusion about large multinational corporations and their pros and cons is in your hands. The things in reality are almost never black and white and a serious analysis has to be made and monitored to ensure that the world’s economy is going in the right direction.