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商业 - 能源

化解人类资源危机需要再来一场工业革命

Brian Dumaine 2014年04月08日

传统观念认为,地球的资源总有耗光的一天,届时人类将走向灭亡。但罗杰斯认为,借助新的工业革命,采用新的技术,抛弃传统能源消费观,人类可以大幅提高资源生产率,避免这个危机。

    是否可以说,我们有信心用科技拯救人类?

    技术已经有了。最有可能出现问题的是管理层在应对变化时行动迟缓,一直试图遵循陈旧的工作方式。还没有足够多的高管团队知道如何去实现它。

    它需要什么样的新型管理思维?

    首先是,必须计算资源生产率。目前,几乎没有哪家公司能够很好地执行这一管理措施。大多数CEO会告诉你他们的资本回报,或员工人均产出,但几乎没有人能告诉你资源生产率。

    然后呢?

    如果你是一名CEO,你应该问问自己的下属:我应该如何将资源生产率每年提高5%至10%?这是一个很高的标准。过去20年,我们每年才能提高1%的资源生产率,而劳动生产率的提高幅度却超过3%。必须从整个业务系统的角度进行思考,找出提高资源生产率的有效方法。可以问这样的问题:如何将一款产品的重量和成本减少80%至90%?如何从供应链中去掉大宗商品价格与可用性风险?是否有机会将设备使用率提高两倍,进而减少80%的水资源消耗或40%的能源消耗?

    你认为资源革命将帮助美国创造收入丰厚的工作,但历史老师教导我们,科技与效率会毁掉工作岗位。

    每一次这种巨大的经济转型都会让一些人丢掉工作,但工业革命带来的生产率的提高,从长期来看将增加就业,提高工资水平。

    目前,在美国存在一种非常有趣的自相矛盾的情况。一方面,许多增长迅速的就业领域没有足够的工人,因为求职者不具备操作精密设备所需要的数据密集型的蓝领技能。而另一方面,许多更为传统的工业岗位却在消失。这就是一场竞赛。要看创造新工作的速度和毁灭工作的速度,哪一个更快。

    Isn't this putting a lot of faith in technology to save us?

    The technology is there today. The biggest thing that can go wrong is that management is slow to react to the kinds of change we're seeing and keeps trying to do things the old way. Not enough executive teams know how to pull this off.

    What kind of new management mindset is need?

    It starts with the idea that you have to measure your resource productivity. It's a management measure that almost no company does well today. Most CEOs can tell you about their return on capital employed or output per employee, but almost none of them can tell you about resource productivity.

    Then what?

    If you're the CEO you should be asking your folks, How do I improve resource productivity 5 t0 10% each year? That's a high bar. For the last 20 years we've improved resource productivity only 1% a year compared to more than 3% for labor productivity. You have to think across your business system and figure out dramatic ways to increase your resource productivity. Ask questions such as, How do you take 80% to 90% of weight and cost out of a product, how do you take commodity price and availability risk out of the supply chain, where are there opportunities to double equipment utilization or cut water use by 80% or cut energy use by 40%?

    You argue that the resource revolution will help create decent-paying American jobs, but history teaches us that technology and efficiency can destroy jobs.

    Every time we have this kind of major economic transition, a group of people will lose their jobs, but the increase in productivity that comes with an industrial revolution will in the long term foster job and wage growth.

    What we have in America today is this very interesting paradox. We have a number of fast-growing job categories where you can't find enough workers because the candidates don't have the data-intensive blue collar skills required to operate today's sophisticated equipment. At the same time, some more traditional industrial jobs are disappearing. It's a race. Can we create new jobs faster than we destroy them?

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