Category Archives: MARKETPLACE


Slow economic growth is the mantra of political campaigns and economic angst. Growth in economic output per hour (“labour productivity”) achieved an annual pace of 3 percent for a full half-century between 1920 and 1970. Since 1970 that rate has slowed to about 1.5 percent, and in the last six years productivity growth has slowed further to a lamentable 0.5 percent annual rate.

Robin Gordon’s  book The Rise and Fall of American Growth attributes this enormous contrast between rapid growth in 1920-70 and slow growth after 1970 to the basic nature of inventions. Growth in the middle of the 20th century was propelled by the invention in the late 19th century of electricity, the internal combustion engine, the telephone, chemicals and plastics, and the diffusion to every urban household of clear running water and waste removal. America made a transition from 50 percent of the working population on farms to a largely urban nation, and the drudgery of household work – carrying water in and out, doing laundry on a scrub board – made a transition to modern bathrooms and kitchens by the 1950s.

The digital revolution associated with computers has since 1960 dominated the sphere of innovation, as office work transitioned from the typewriter and old-fashioned calculator to the new world of personal computers, spreadsheet and word processing software, the internet, and search engines. But the impact of this revolution in boosting productivity growth lasted only one decade (1995-2005), a much shorter impetus than occurred earlier in the century when productivity growth achieved its 3 percent annual pace for five decades from 1920 to 1970.

Why? The computer revolution altered office work but did not extend into everyday life as had the earlier inventions that brought us electricity, motor vehicles, and the modern kitchen and bathroom. Smart phones were introduced by Blackberry in 2003 and by Apple in 2007, but their uses are primarily to boost consumer enjoyment through social networks and game-playing, not a part of the market economy that creates jobs and pays wages.

Why has productivity growth been so mediocre, a 0.5 percent annual pace since 2010? In my view this has occurred because most of the benefits of the digital revolution were over by 2005. Everywhere you look, from corporate offices to check-in desks at doctor, dentist, and veterinarian offices, the equipment on the desks is the same as in 2005, as is most of the software.

This slackening of the pace of economic growth due to the minor impact of new innovations has both a pessimistic and an optimistic aspect. Slow productivity growth dampens the ability of business firms to provide wage increases to their workers. But slow productivity growth also means that steadily growing output continues to provide new jobs, 15.5 million of which have been created in the U.S. since early 2010.

But how can so many jobs be created in a world of technological hype of robots taking over the economy? Aren’t robots about to decimate jobs, throwing half the population out of work as has been predicted to occur over the next decade by the two Oxford economists in 2013, Carl Frey and Michael Osborne?

Robots are nothing new; the first industrial robot was introduced by General Motors in 1961, and by the mid-1990’s robots had a major role in automobile factories, welding together body parts and freeing human workers from the noxious fumes of the auto paint shop. But robots have made little impact outside of manufacturing. Even Amazon’s high-tech warehouses use robots just to move shelves to human workers, who hand-select the items to be shipped as well as the packing material, and pack the shipments by hand.

But outside of manufacturing and wholesale warehouses, robots are hard to find. I play a game called “find the robot.” In my daily strolls in and out of supermarkets, restaurants, doctor and dentist offices, my nearby hospital, offices in my own university, and the vast amount of employment involving elementary and secondary teachers, personal trainers, and old age caretakers, I have yet to find a robot.

In my journeys, the closest thing I have found to the introduction of a robot in the service sector is that in a local casual dining restaurant, there are kiosks on the tables to allow patrons to pay their bills without human intervention. But offsetting that is the fact that my local supermarket recently removed its self-checkout electronic kiosks to be replaced by human express checkout agents, apparently due to excessive fraud as customers slid expensive items by the dumb credulity of the self-checkout kiosks.

The Frey and Osborne pessimism about jobs is total fiction. They predict over the next decade that 55 percent of airline pilot jobs will be eliminated. Sorry, but government regulations require two pilots in a commercial aircraft, and a switch to one pilot per aircraft is nowhere in sight. They predict that 92 percent of retail checkout clerk jobs will be eliminated, but there is no robot-like replacement of retail clerks in sight beyond the 30-year-old invention of bar-code scanning.

Surely multiple-function robots will be developed, but it will be a long and gradual process before robots outside of manufacturing and wholesaling become a significant factor in replacing human jobs in the service, transportation or construction sectors. And it is in those sectors that the slowness of productivity growth is dragging down the economy’s overall performance.

My book concludes that the rapid economic growth of the mid-20th century cannot be repeated. Those “Great Inventions” were too important and too pervasive to happen again anytime soon.  But let us not forget, the corollary of slow productivity growth is the rapid creation of jobs, as we have witnessed in the last six years and will enjoy for the foreseeable future.

Robert J. Gordon is professor in social sciences at Northwestern University and the author of The Rise and Fall of American Growth, one of six books on the shortlist for the 2016 Financial Times and McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award, to be announced Nov. 22


One of the organisations I wholeheartedly endorse is Business Greenhouse. This is the fourth video in the series by Wez Hone: it is on building systems in your business and getting out of debt . You need to watch all four. Be blessed.

Wez Hone has a gift and calling from God to help business people grow successful Kingdom businesses. What do I mean by a Kingdom business. It is one where the owner knows God, and whose business and working life is increasingly an outward manifestation of an inward walk of faith, motivated by God’s love. They are people who have been released from striving for success through their own strength. They are building their working life and business on the rock – Psalm 127:1 & Matthew 7:24-27.

Are you are longing to serve God in your professional life and see His Kingdom manifest through you?

Are you yearning to understand more of how to apply God’s word, His Yes and His ways and be led by the Holy Spirit?

Looking to gain a clearer prophetic understanding of our times, its agenda and God’s purposes?

If you are then you need to contact me and let me connect you with the people and organisations which can help you. May I also suggest you buy a copy of my book Build a Kingdom Business – Empowered by the Holy Spirit. It is available as an eBook on Amazon or trade paper back by sending me an email on – cost AUS$10.00 incl postage in Australia.

GOD is shaking nations like never before. Are you prepared?

Many believers are getting ready for the Rapture and many see increased persecution of Christians imminent. Whilst both may be right, God is still in control and He is working out His plans and purposes. With increased shaking and persecution come opportunities for us to be the salt and light in the marketplace. For those “in step with the Holy Spirit, they will be like the men of Issachar able to discern the times and know what to do.

Governments have reached beyond God’s appointed boundaries. They have displaced the roles of families, free enterprise, church, non profits and volunteerism.  Governments have tried to play God and are not up to the task.

Most nations are in so much debt there is no way out. They are struggling to pay the interest at near zero interest rates. Stock Market collapses are imminent

With near zero interest rates retirees are struggling to survive as they spend their savings. Housing prices are inflated as people buy investment homes for future retirement income. Share prices are similarly inflated as people chase dividends.

The big banks exposure to derivative contracts is horrendous. Goldman Sachs total assets in 2014 was a shade over 105 billion dollars but their total exposure to Derivatives is more than 48 trillion dollars, i.e. 460 times greater than their total assets. The Derivatives bubble is like the “sword of Damocles” hanging over the global economy by a thread day after day, month after month. At some point the thread is going to break and all hell will break loose. A financial crisis far greater than what was experienced in 2008 is coming and can’t be too far off – sometime in 2016/2017.

Isaiah said: ” …unto us a Son is given (Jesus): and the government shall be upon His shoulders and His name shall be called Wonderful Counsellor, mighty God …

Jesus has a body on the earth and His body has to see itself as the administrator of heaven on earth. We are the temples of the Holy Spirit through whom Jesus can implement His plans and purposes on this earth.

The Hebrew word for worship is also the word for work, our work should be our worship, if it is done excellently, as unto the Lord.

God wants to build businesses that will effect change… for profit, for purpose, forever – even in the midst of shaking.

Consider joining the International Christian Chamber of Commerce and/or Kingdom Business Network if you sense you are one of these change agents. . Check out both websites to see what is right for you. I am on the Board of ICCC Australia and look after business development in NSW for KBN so if you want to discuss either contact me –

A pastor who understands the importance of marketplace ministry

The “light turns on” for Pastor Fred Hartley when he realizes marketplace ministry is as important as his own ministry.

Pastors need to train their members to live out their call from God to be ministers in the marketplace.

Pastor Fred Hartley  decided to do something about it. Check out the video

Kingdom Business testimony by founder of ICCC

Amazing testimony by the founder of the International Christian Chamber of Commerce, Gunnar Olson.

Can I suggest that if you are interested in building a Kingdom business that you consider joining ICCC or Kingdom Business Network Australia.

I am on the Board of ICCC Australia so if you want to discuss this further email me on

Global Marketplace Exchange

I attended a three day Global Marketplace Exchange Conference (GME) in Melbourne last week. About 160 people were in attendance, all with a passion to see God’s plan for nations, in particular Australia, realized. In attendance were business, civic and professional leaders along with Pastors, Ministers and Christian Organisation leaders.
GME is to be a platform to promote the Kingdom of God influence throughout the domains of the marketplace. It was a first in bringing Church and Marketplace people together for this purpose. Check out the website
Conference objectives included:
1. Formation of relationships in the marketplace from different backgrounds and traditions.
2. Multiply influence through cooperation, convergence and multiplication through synergy.
3. Mentoring of emerging leaders.
4. Exchanging Kingdom insights.
5. Incubating Kingdom objectives in the domains.
6. Cross fertilization of ideas and sharing of experiences and success stories.
7. Discovering ministries and sharing resources.
8. Encouraging referrals
9. Develop training and equipping opportunities to take the Great Commission into the marketplace.
An area of Church ministry that is of critical importance to the marketplace is the training and equipping of the saints to serve Jesus well in their daily occupations. Of particular importance is the discipling of young people from school and campus to the workforce. In this regard the training materials produced by the International Christian Chamber of Commerce are exemplary particularly the Transformed Working Life Series.

If any business or church leaders are interested in putting on a Build a Kingdom Business training seminar or learning more about the ICCC training resources then please contact me by email at