Shifting Sands

April 4, 2016

Demographics are fascinating, but often talked about with broad strokes and generalizations. This article in strategy+business offers a deeper dive into how businesses and communities can gain competitive advantage by understanding some important trends.

The article and the data it presents suggest that businesses should look to a location’s diversity – especially the female workforce and ability to train younger workers (15-24) and older workers (55-69). The U.S. is well-positioned demographically, but has a long way to go regarding gender pay equity and the training and retraining of the workforce.

There are also corresponding corporate and public policies suggested, and the economic development professional who advises companies and elected officials would find them well worth reading.

I see the great advantage that a large, open and diverse country like the United States has over its competitors.

  • Size matters. Not only does the U.S. have millions of workers, it has a huge market to serve. This is an area where Europe falls down.
  • Openness matters. While countries like China, India and Brazil are large, they are less open, diverse and progressive, which limits their potential.

These are just more reasons to bet on the United States’ growth going forward.

These topics are worth dialogue at the metro level. What do your demographics in key areas look like? Are there state and local policies and programs that promote growth, retention and attraction of key groups?

-Kenny McDonald

One Columbus Update

  • Thank you to WELD and Kegler Brown Hill + Ritter for hosting Rana Foroohar, TIME Columnist and The Curious Capitalist, in honor of Women’s History Month. Last week, One Columbus joined business and community leaders to hear Foroohar deliver an outstanding address at WELD’s annual keynote event.
  • This week, the One Columbus team is in Washington, D.C. for the IEDC FED Forum. Back at home, our team is preparing for upcoming business development missions in Canada and China as well as the Hannover Messe, the world’s leading trade fair for industrial technology.
  • Our team has returned from a successful business development mission in Japan and is preparing for upcoming missions in Canada and China as well as Hannover Messe, the world’s leading trade fair for industrial technology.