Written by Julia Jungwan Shin
After meeting with several U.S. leaders in Washington DC, I grasped the importance of relationship with external environment that could affect business decisions. It was well understood why organizations need to make good relationships with external parties and why they integrate and apply the relationship to handle challenges and tackle issues. I ascertained that the management can make good business decisions by leveraging relationship with external parties.
When a function of lobbying was introduced at our conference, I was impressed given that there is no such function allowed in Korea due to anti-corruption law. I find it supportive given its effective delivery of company’s stance to the government and influence the actions and policies of government officials. I understood how the communications with Senates and House of representatives are conducted with lobbyists and what results are expected. Companies need professional corporate representatives as advocates of the company’s interests. I perceived that corporate engagement in government affairs could lead to positive influence for companies to achieve goals and objectives. And, bilateral relationships could lead to better informed government decisions from the government’s perspective. I asked Carolyn Brehm in the class what difference as a role could be found between the corporate government affairs and the corporate compliance. In fact, I often see that Government affairs and Compliance come to conflict when it comes to responsibility for new government regulations. They often avoid corresponding responsibilities, especially when things go wrong. Carolyn clearly advised Government affairs is responsible for proposed regulations before it is enacted and Compliance is responsible for meeting with enforced regulations. The definition helped me figure out who takes responsibility for what and when regarding external regulations. Marcus Norland explained that any government decision on North Korea could affect Korean Peninsular politically, economically and socially. When South Korea’s relationship with North Korea got sour, all Korean companies whose operations were in North Korea got affected adversely. Norland was asked what level of impact of the UN economic sanctions to North Korea was seen so far. He said North Korea were insensitive to economic sanctions so far and the recent atmosphere is uncertain. It is true that any external threat or financial collapse by any countries often cause great tension globally. So, we couldn’t help to remain vigilant about external environment changes. Henry Levine stated that companies must be well informed of external atmosphere and take proper plans and Edward Alden showed worries over the US foreign policy affecting global trading. I already see some critical changes with my client companies who worriedly find alternative ways to mitigate risks in trading with the US.
I understood well the importance of the relationship between organization and external environment. And it appears critical to keep good relationship with external parties for continued growth and success of business today.