Lack of Trust Hurts the IndustryJanette Toral
[May 31, 2003] The biggest dilemma that a researcher could ever have is to conduct a study in a vertical segment whose players are not keen to trust or cooperate.
Take the case of our outsourcing community. Majority of our industry figures are very much downplayed. The common complaint given by investors is that our industry data representing the sector is outdated, especially in the software development sector. Our only revenue figures on hand were based on 1999 reports. Why is this so? Because industry players are hesitant in sharing information. No one wants to trust.
The same case with the Internet Service Providers. Their lack of cooperation in participating in surveys contributes to why we don’t have a good basis on the real number of Internet users in the country. It is not enough to say that the sector is hurting with the entry of carriers in their market space. It must be backed by numbers in order for these claims to be seriously taken into consideration.
The lack of numbers greatly affects investment coming into the country. Potential locators starts by looking at industry situation and figures. Without accurate and up-to-date figures, we will likely lose these potential locators to other countries who not only have great incentives but accurate information on the status of the industry it wishes to invest in.
It also demotivates potential local entrepreneurs in this market and its investor community.
If industry players can’t share and trust third party surveys, their respective industry associations should do such industry reports. (which I heard is also unsuccessful in achieving the same)
Knowledge and industry opinion not backed by figures are of unsatisfactory kind. Worst, it hurts the industry and gives a poor impression about the country’s progress in such area.
Take the case of India who has updated information on its IT industry situation. They were able to do so for players are cooperating fully as they value the importance of coming up with accurate industry situationers.
Faith, trust, and calculated risk has to be balanced with industry, cross-segment, and country interest.
Else, if we can’t learn to trust and look beyond ourselves, then perhaps it’s time that we stop blaming others except ourselves for any problems we have.