Quo Vadis Finnish Education Business?

February 9, 2014 by Juha Merinen

All for one and one for all seems to be a mountain to climb within the Finnish education business. At the same time we are sitting on a pot of gold. Finland has more than plenty state-of-the-art Start-Ups having world class gamified solutions for education. Where is the next exit to future growth and prosperity in Finnish education business?

Quo Vadis Team Finland as a catalyst for Finnish education business

The expectations towards Team Finland have been sky high since the launch of the initiative in September 2012. After one and a half years it is only fair to state that the execution, concrete outcomes and results have been quite disappointing for many. The initiative has proven to be more a governmental effectiveness program than a true effort in developing Finnish SMEs and Start-Ups business opportunities.

A good example of this within the education business is Future Learning Finland (www.futurelearningfinland.fi).
The program is heavily under resourced and companies are actively searching for more effective alternatives
for education business development. It is amazing that Finland, being in the heart of Europe’s most progressive educational and game development communities has not been able to monetize the opportunity.

The power of many

The basic idea of Export Partner Groups is to have an effective way of launching export activities in new markets. Certainly there are great results that speak for themselves, but when it comes to education business the big picture  is not so clear. It is essential to dig into the root cause why Finland has not succeeded in education export business.

We Finns have not yet got it right how to capitalize on the ´Power of Many´. We have to learn how to work within global value networks, which value point we should target to, how to position and differentiate ourselves correctly. This is now changing faster than speed of light as we speak. Companies are starting to do it by themselves – for themselves – together.

It is crystal clear that the Finnish companies working towards global education market will not continue waiting
our governmental stakeholders to get its act together but take the initiatives by themselves. This will lead into
brand new ways of working together “in a perfect harmony” between the companies. One of the key questions
will be the future role of the existing public education business export programs.

Kotler´s 5th P – Purpose

“Philip Kotler who coined the gospel of marketing, the four Ps (product, price, place and promotion), added  recently
a fifth – Purpose. The 83-year old author of 50 books and the SC Johnson & Son Distinguished Professor of International Marketing at Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management says that a study reveals that businesses that were ‘firms of endearment’ were highly profitable.

This means companies which were the best places to work for and also focused on the bottom of the pyramid are known
to outperform the market in a nine to one ratio over a ten-year period.

He explains that this is because if a company has the interest of customers, employees and the supplier aligned to
its business then it will make everyone happy thus improving the overall profitability of the business and that is why, Purpose, should also form the core of the business”.

Source: http://www.dnaindia.com/money/report-kotler-adds-a-5th-p-to-his-set-of-four-purpose-1812393

It is only fair to ask how Finland is addressing to Kotler´s 5th P when it comes to efforts in education export business. Are the people within governmental offices really having the purpose in their daily operations when it comes to promoting the Finnish education business sector? What is the current “Corporate Culture” within the governmental stakeholders in charge of promoting above mentioned Finnish education SMEs and Start-Ups?


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