How Do Government and Business Match Up?

Government and business match up in a number of ways. One general view is that businesses should seek to maximize the benefits, such as tax credits, it receives from government. Another view is that businesses should work in partnership with government to address societal matters. A third view is that business should anticipate changes in public policy to enhance competitive positioning.

Business and Government Interactions

In modern Russia, interaction between government and business is characterized by deep differences in positions of the parties. They include such issues as authority criminalizing, lobbying for the interests of some companies in government, and administrative barriers to business development.

In this case, understanding the frustration points that business users experience with their interactions with government is critical for both reducing friction and improving the service. Using a combination of ethnographic research and customer journey mapping, businesses can identify common pain points that frustrate business users, and then develop solutions to those problems.

To assess the current state of the interaction between government and business, we used content analysis of materials from the leading regional weekly among the business community of the Omsk region. The analysis was performed with the use of latent coding. The leading thematic blocks of the interaction between business and government were identified, updated with new data and allocated by different types of lighting (analytical article, interview, note). The main functions of the interaction between business and government are represented in a triangle: facilitating, stimulating, control, sanctions, arbitration and regulation.

Business Perspectives on Government

Generally speaking, respondents say that government significantly affects their companies’ economic value. They are largely in agreement that governments should provide incentives to business—tax credits, subsidies, grants, and so on—as the primary driver of economic prosperity and job creation.

Some of these attitudes reflect ideological beliefs about the proper role of government in a free market economy. For example, a large majority of executives believe that companies should proactively and regularly engage with government, even though they express frustration with some aspects of this engagement.

For instance, a significant percentage of executives say they are frustrated that regulators often don’t understand the economics of their industries. Others find government compliance burdensome and costly. They also complain that the processes their companies use to manage these relationships are less robust than those they employ in managing interactions with other stakeholders.

Business Responses to Government

In an effort to increase their competitive position, businesses often respond to government policy changes. They do so through reactive responses to policies, interactive responses that engage with government policymakers and actors (including the media), and proactive responses that try to influence policy in order to serve business interests.

While executives in all countries select passing laws and enforcing regulations as the most likely actions of government to affect companies’ economic value, there are regional differences in the other actions that are perceived to have an effect.

Additionally, business can be influenced by interest groups that seek public policy influence.

Government Perspectives on Business

There are many ways that government impacts business, including regulations, taxes, and other policies. Governments can have a negative impact by placing burdensome requirements on businesses or by overregulating industries.

Governments can also have a positive effect on business by protecting the public with consumer-protection, worker-safety, and other laws. Governments can also encourage economic growth by creating and enforcing business incentives like tax breaks.

Beyond the formal institutions of government, there are many citizen groups that can have a powerful influence on government policy and business practices. They can lobby and litigate, mobilize large groups to demonstrate or otherwise make their views known, and gain significant exposure in the news media. These groups do not have the economic clout or resources of industry, but they can often influence policymakers. The impact of these groups is magnified when a significant market event triggers government action. This is why our research shows that 71 percent of executives say companies should proactively and regularly engage with government to shape policy.

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