There was some serious fear among AV integrators last year that the tariffs President Donald Trump said he’d impose on China would mean AV gear would cost them more money to buy products for their installations and leave them to decide whether to pass those increased costs onto their customers.
Instead, we saw another worldwide ripple effect that originated in China, as the coronavirus crippled many aspects of the economy for most of 2020 and into this year.
So, the tariffs didn’t have the same ramifications as we thought they might and that’s a good thing in the eyes of most AV integrators. With Trump set to leave office this week in favor of President-Elect Joe Biden, who will be inaugurated as the 46th U.S. president on Wednesday, what will his policies do to and for those in AV?
While it’s not strictly a business-related policy, Biden has emphasized the importance of eradicating COVID-19 from the U.S. and the world and is planning to back that stance up with financial and medical resources aimed at helping small businesses especially get back to work safely.
That emphasis on the little guy is in stark contrast to Trump’s focus on the wealthiest business leaders, likely from his days of working with and spending time with them on the golf course or in the boardroom or on the site of his latest eponymous building in New York, New Jersey or Florida.
From Campaign Promises to Policy Changes
We’ll see which countries Biden embraces and which ones he decides to play tough with and how those decisions affect the prices and availability of AV gear—and the ability of integrators to continue to spread their businesses around the world.
I’ve heard more than once from global AV integrators that there are some countries where they are better off relying on partners with roots in those areas than attempting to plant their own flags there and I imagine that won’t change in the Biden administration but maybe some will be more welcoming.
What other policies on President-elect Biden’s platform are you monitoring closely? Which ones do you think could mean the difference between profitability and a struggle to break even? And which campaign promises do you think will never make it beyond stump speeches into actual legislation?
Also, what lessons can you as business leaders learn about the clumsy baton passing from Trump to Biden, complete with an impeachment? Have you seen your colleagues struggle to give up control–or have you had an issue doing it during your leadership stint?