Jeffrey Sachs is currently leading a team of economic advisers to Russian President Boris Yeltsin. Frank Yans is a vice president of Arthur D. Little, Inc. This conversation took place on April 30 at Professor Sachs' home in Newton, Massachusetts.
Eastern European countries have strong industrial traditions, much like those of the West, but their economies have been severely distorted by the mismanagement of the now-discredited communist system. Therefore, investment opportunities in the region are often clouded by significant issues.
Across North America and Europe, companies in a variety of businesses are beginning to use environmental performance to achieve competitive advantage, integrating the management of environmental, health, and safety issues into their operations, business processes, and corporate strategies.
In this fall of 1991, as the former constituents of the Soviet Union struggle to define new political identities and to avert economic disaster, it is worth considering the situations of some of the countries that emerged earlier from behind the Iron Curtain.
In recent years, we have often been approached by senior executives with questions along the following lines: "I hear all this hype about providing better customer service as part of my Total Quality Management program, and it sounds intriguing, but the thing is, how do I justify investing in it...