From business point of view, we need to use the necessary resources to make profit. This profit will be used to pay for our bills, rent and salary of workers.
The environment for SME in Singapore is getting more and more difficult. In the 80’s, all business is blooming, whether you are capable or not you will still make some money.
Now, you need to be very capable to stay afloat in business (I am not saying making money yet).
We have seen some businesses blooming but this proportion is small compare to those that fail.
So, business owners nowadays have to face up with a harsh business environment.
This is a complicated problem to solve.
Our government has generally omitted small SMEs in their planning. So we are more like an underdog trying to survive.
Just that instead of working for other people, we work for ourselves. Our situation are not better than the workers really.
As I see it, workers just need to work but business owners have more problems to solve.
We have workers’ problem to solve, business environment to struggle, customers’ complaint to handle, supplier cost to manage, rental agreement with landlord and government policy to take note.
As I have told you earlier, I can pay every worker $4000 to $5000 per month which you are advocating for.
We will hire all locals.
My price has to go up. But consumers will run away. So how long do you think my business can survive?
If rental does not come down, we have to squeeze from somewhere, and you know where we will squeeze.
And if our children are not train how to have good moral standing and attitude to life, we will have a more difficult environment to hire good local executives.
Simply put, we need high EQ student not those with high IQ.
So being a boss is not easy now…
Let me pose a question to you. If you are boss yourself, would you hire foreigners?
If the answer is no, then I salute you.
If your answer is yes, then we are back to square one.
It is just myopic to look at this manpower issue as a local vs foreign problem. There is a larger social problem looming above us.
Creating local vs foreign argument will just create unnecessary tension in our society.
We need to solve our own problem, ourselves. No body will help us, be pro-active. It is not productive ranting away.
We need to do something, fast!
And if this means making use of foreign workers, then use them by all means. They make use of us to earn more money , we will make use of them to create wealth for ourselves.
It is quite sad that Singapore has to de-generate into this situation. I guess it will take another generation to correct this misnomer.
I also sense there is an under-current pressure of unemployment building up. However, do you have any figures to back you up?
I would like to suggest instead of waiting to be employed, start a co-operative (like NTUC) for the unemployed.
Everyone is a shareholder, everyone is the boss, everyone is the worker, and everyone is employed.
One hundred percent local and all profit will be distributed among the shareholder/worker.
This may be the utopian plan for Singapore…
Editor’s Note: The writer is in the textile business and hires mainly foreigners.