Facebook. Apple. Amazon. Google. These high-growth technology companies all have one thing in common – they all started in the US and were nurtured here. Arguably, none of these companies could have been so successful so quickly if they were based outside the US. While there are a number of factors that make starting and growing a business feasible, there are some specific factors that make the US uniquely suited for innovative companies like the ones mentioned here. In this, our first installment of a four part series examining the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) in a post-American world, we will be highlighting the strengths of starting a business in the United States.
The diversity of this country has helped make the US a great country in which to live and do business. It is that diversity and dynamism that attracts others to come to our shores and puts the US at the crossroads of the best ideas and insights from all over the world. Combine that dynamism with the freedoms granted for individuals to follow their passions with limited governmental interference, and voila, you create the ideal environment for knowledge-driven industries such as information technology and biotechnology to blossom.
There are many reasons why technology-driven companies flourish in the US. Listed below are at least four that stand out in my mind when compared to other countries:
- Educated workforce: The American university system, through focus on research, scholarship and innovation, provides a creative and educated workforce on which to build and expand knowledge-driven businesses.
- Respect for intellectual property: This simple protection ensures that those who make the inventions and innovations, no matter how small or how big, are protected through trademarks, copyrights, patents and trade secrets.
- Government stability: The stability of governmental systems is directly proportional to long term business investment and growth because businesses thrive in stable political and social environments.
- Contract law: Compliance with contract law provides additional protection for businesses and employees, assuring fairness for service rendered and partnerships created.
Indeed, it is because of many of these factors, among others, that have helped BRI reach some level of success in our relatively short history. We hire well-qualified graduates from the many quality universities across the country. We have a patent portfolio that allowed BRI to carve out a nice niche for ourselves in the market. And we are thankful every day that our legal contracts hold all parties accountable and create long term trust. We are also thankful that the government is more or less stable and so we can focus on growing our businesses and not worry about politics (but more on that in a different post…).