Until you have good law in a country, it is very difficult to do good business, said Prof. Charles Handy. Law enforcement is a factor which must not be ignored when doing business, and failure to do so is to encourage a culture of corruption and impunity in the business sector.
Strathmore Business School (SBS) Alumni who attended the Great Africans Getaway had the privilege of listening to Charles Handy, Author and Broadcaster; Management Guru (UK) as well as Nigel Boardman, Partner, Slaughter and Mary (UK) as they shared insights on Good Business needs Good Law. The event took place Great Rift Valley Lodge from 14th 16th November, 2014.
According to Nigel Boardman, there seems to be a great disconnect between law and business. There is a notion that both aspects are separate entities, however, if we are to have effectiveness in conducting our businesses, it is important that legal schools and business schools come together to give holistic knowledge to its students. As students learn what it is to do business effectively, they also need to understand the legalities that go into conducting business. None can do without the other.
The law is a necessity in guiding/ promoting a sense of order in the society. Good law however does not mean we ought to rely on it solely. It is important to maintain relationships even as law is enforced. Therefore it is worth noting; Good Law can back up relationships but cannot replace it. Legal contracts in business transactions are not enough in themselves, but it is also important to foster relationships as business is transacted.
When laws are passed, they should be made clear and public to citizens. Mr. Boardman added, At no point should the law be seen as separate from the community in which it is based, rather, it should be part and parcel of it.
Laws must also be implemented otherwise everyone will ignore them. While law may tell us what should be done and what should not be done, they dont tell us what ought to be done. This is where justice comes in, and justice will always be bigger than the law. Just as it is important to remember the aspect of relationships while enforcing law, equally it is key to note that law alone, is not enough, justice must be exercised.
In his closing remarks Charles Handy mentioned, If you do the right thing, and if you know what the right thing is, you will feel good about yourself.