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Business survey supports late King’s SEP principles

Aug 16. 2017
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By The Nation

A survey undertaken by the global research and consultancy firm Oxford Business Group (OBG) found broad-based support among senior executives in Thailand for the principles of the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy (SEP) and its role in steering their ventures towards sustained growth.

As part of its “Business Barometer: Thailand SEP Survey”, OBG asked dozens of high-level executives across the country a wide-ranging series of questions aimed at gauging their thoughts on the SEP.

Compiled over the past 12 months, the findings are now available to view on OBG’s Editors’ Blog, titled “Thailand’s Sufficiency Economy Philosophy: A template for business success worldwide”, and analysed in detail by Paulius Kuncinas, the group’s managing editor for Asia.

Created and championed by His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, the SEP advocates the adoption of key principles, led by moderation, knowledge and reasonableness, as a route to sustainable development.

According to OBG’s findings, two-thirds of respondents strongly agreed that the principles enshrined in the SEP could benefit their business over time and viewed them as a route to growth rather than a requirement for compliance or corporate social responsibility. The remaining third said they agreed with the statement.

Almost one third (33 per cent) cited prudence in instilling risk management and preparedness against shocks as the most important component of the SEP for business leaders.

Asked about possible challenges in applying the philosophy’s principles in business, 40 per cent of CEOs surveyed cited sustaining or expanding market share as potentially presenting problems, with the same percentage saying mergers and acquisitions problematic.

Kuncinas said that the group’s survey of local and international CEOs in Thailand had provided a valuable insight into the way in which business leaders were implementing the principles of the SEP on a practical level across the sectors of the Thai economy.

“Perhaps most significantly, the results indicated a consensus among decision-makers based in a broad range of industries that the adoption of these principles in their everyday business activity correlates strongly with long-term expansion,” he said.

“Our findings show that while there are elements of the the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy that can be challenging to balance with business development, many of Thailand’s decision-makers view it as a valuable blueprint for sustainable growth in today’s challenging market conditions.”

The “OBG Business Barometer: CEO Surveys” mark an addition to the group’s extensive portfolio of research tools. The full results of the survey will be made available online and in print. Similar studies are also under way in the other markets in which OBG operates.

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