Technological Change a Small Business Challenge

Article excerpt

IF you were asked to think back to the changes occurring over the past 30 years you might consider what has happened over each of the three decades. While we will all have our own impressions of each decade I was taken by the societal changes that were reported in an exercise involving local business people recently. We numbered about one dozen, and each wrote one or two key points about the things we remembered from each decade.

While the list we developed was in no way complete, for the 1980s it included a laissez faire attitude, the America's Cup win, Vietnamese refugees, most bosses being male, lower pay rates for women, a focus on an Australian identity, memories of the bicentennial and the introduction of personal computers.

For the 1990s, the group listed the Gulf War, the recession we had to have, economic rationalism, Middle Eastern refugees, an outward focus toward Asia, high unemployment, introduction of the internet, mobile phones and the dot com boom. The a[approximately]noughties' were recalled for new millennium celebrations, the millennium bug (Y2K), September 11, society becoming more conservative, rising oil prices, the growth in the mining sector, African refugees, the Global Financial Crisis (GFC), the first female NSW Governor, NSW Premier, Governor General and almost the first female Prime Minister. On the IT front there was mention of the mobility of technology, the introduction of voice over internet protocol (VoIP), social networking, internet retailing and growth in online businesses. …