Sunday, July 8, 2012
How Obamacare removes uncertainty.
You all know I'm an "Up With Chris" junkie, right? His time slot is why God invented the DVR, even for some here on EST. Yesterday morning's show spent the first half hour talking about Friday's disappointing job numbers, and one of the panelists was a Manhattan small business man, who said that he was holding back from from hiring more people because 1, the future is uncertain, 2, government policies and November election results add to the uncertainty, and 3, he doesn't want to cross a threshold in terms of numbers of employees which will expose him to different requirements.
I get that, although I disagree. Successful businesses have always coped with uncertainty, and some have gambled on it and won. As for the fear of crossing 50 employees, businesses need to understand that if they're impeded by 50, they'll never get to 75 or 100 or the opportunities which are implied by those staff sizes. They will essentially be leaving those future opportunities for others to reap.
But here's something else: having a regulatory standard removes uncertainty. Even if it's a pain, you know your competitors have to face it, too. And further, you have a better understanding of the side benefits which are out there if your employees want to leave, or if you're competing with other companies. The implementation of regulation actually levels the playing field, because if other have to do it, your failure to do so exposes you to greater risks.
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(DISCLOSURE: I work for Abt SRBI. My company does polling. My opinions should not be construed as representing those of my employer.)