Are we moving beyond the multinational corporation towards the truly global corporation? Samuel Palmisano, chief executive of IBM, makes this case in an article in the latest edition of Foreign Affairs. Mr. Palmisano sees a globalized 21st century where we need to abandon antiquated thinking on multinationals and embrace the emergence of “the globally integrated enterprise” that develops strategy, management and operations to integrate production worldwide. He argues that the global approach offers:
A better and more profitable way to organize business activities – and it can deliver enormous economic benefits to developed and developing nations.
However, to foster truly global enterprises serving the global market, Palmisano encourages creation of a global regulatory system through better cooperation between regulatory agencies. Without such change it is hard to see even the most globally inegrated company escaping the impacts of politics that remain decidedly local. (Also see a previous post about a Palmisano op-ed in the Financial Times.)