Friday, August 10, 2012

Let's Talk Numbers!

In schools and universities, we learn many new concepts and theories in any given academic year. Though we talk a lot about the importance of learning and application of the gathered knowledge, most students usually focus on the sole aim of garnering higher GPAs or marks.
With a lot of hype and hoopla, London Olympics are underway. But once it is over, most people will remember the year when it was hosted in London and probably the top three countries who made it high on the medal tally and also the participants' collective and individual records.
Companies systematically come out with their balance sheet each year which has a number of informative sections. But the people, who peruse them chiefly, focus first on the profit or loss values and then to the other related sections.
In similar tone, what is the GDP of a country? Where does it rank in terms of poverty or human development index?
SMEs in various countries might be termed as the backbone of economy, engine of growth, the central nervous system, creator of maximum employment opportunities or have the highest number of establishments but in the end what is their contribution to the overall GDP?
People prefer anything that is quantitative. It always has higher acceptance and acknowledgment over something that is intangible or qualitative in nature. 
The stimulus for this article is an excerpt of the outcome of a survey conducted by ASSOCHAM.
What does this finding mean? Does it mean we are doing well and aspiring to do better? Does it stress that we are laying immense importance on SMEs? Does it mean that we are trend-setters and developing an inclusive approach to strengthening our SMEs? A figure has to be seen in perspective to make a meaning out of it.
Moving away from being descriptive, qualitative and sometimes prescriptive which is commonly my form of writing, in this article we will simply Talk Numbers and try to create some analogy.

Published in SME WORLD August 2012. Click here to read

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