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Google, Government and the art of compromise – Getting the balance right?

Lynne Rawlinson


I was doing my semi-regular slot of reading the morning papers with James Whale on BBC Radio Essex this morning. Aside from the need to rise early, not something I ever enjoy to be honest, I really enjoy having to take the time to read the local and national papers to get a feel for what is happening in that bizarre place known as the real world. The eclectic mix of local news (man found wandering naked in Braintree for god’s sake!!) and global headlines. From a business perspective, the Google Tax settlement seemed as a good as any a story to pay some attention to this fine morning.

I picked it from a stance of “3% tax on earnings would be a great rate for us as individuals to pay” possibly a bit populist but a valid view none the less but James, as he often does so well, added balance by pointing out that many think “Google employ many people, who also pay taxes, generates income in the economy…” . And what an excellent point to make.

Let’s not beat around the bush, the Government have compromised and compromised considerably on the backdated amount. But it is better than nothing and taking into account the other financial benefits to UK PLC maybe it was the right thing to do. The challenge is that Governments are in the business of getting re-elected and as such, their prime objective can cloud all others that are subordinate to it.

For us as business owners compromise is something we should consider when the option occurs but it has to fit, to sit right with our core values and our own ultimate objectives. Otherwise we lose more than we gain and that is not good business. We have choice and to exercise that wisely, with a truly balance view of the benefits is one of the fundamental keys to our success.

“If it is not a Win:Win do not stay in.”