HA NOI (VNS)— A lack of capable leaders with qualifications is holding back Viet Nam's development, say experts, who claim improvements would play a significant role in helping small-to-medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) survive the global recession.
The survey "Leadership quality of Vietnamese CEOs", due to be released next month to coincide with "Viet Nam Human Resource Day", found human resources and business development to be two of the weakest areas for Vietnamese SMEs, said Le Quan, director of the Viet Nam HR Day's organisation board.
The event and survey aim to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of local CEOs, their roles in the sustainable development of the firms and the solutions they provide to improve capacity.
Another survey on 63,760 private enterprises in 30 northern provinces and cities, warned that only 54.5 per cent of the CEOs graduated from colleges and universities. The survey, conducted by the Ministry of Planning and Investment's SMEs Development Department together with Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA), found merely 3.7 per cent of them had gained Masters and PhD degrees.
This survey reported that 42 per cent of firms had a registered capital less than VND1 billion (US$47,619) and only 8.18 per cent of them had registered capital between VND5-10 billion ($238,096 - 476,190).
Former Deputy Prime Minister Vu Khoan said the biggest short-coming of local businesses was a shortage in knowledge for doing business with international partners as well being uniformed of global markets development.
"In the present context of a rising number of suspended and dissolved firms, the poor leadership capacity should be analysed thoroughly so that we can find appropriate solutions," Quan said.
Experts recommended CEOs enhance leadership capacities by upgrading their skills on effective management; strategic management and risk management among others. They should also improve capacity on business analysis, prediction and strategic orientation.
In addition, they also should develop a good accounting system, by applying the national standard accounting system with a longer-term aim towards the world-standard system, experts said.
Tran Phu Son, deputy director general of Ernst and Young Viet Nam and a member of Certified Practising Accountants of Australia (CPA Australia) said businesses should learn and obtain the world-standard certificates or degrees on accounting and auditing because unawareness of these areas can cause risks for enterprises.
Knowledge obtained from international accounting and auditing firms such as CPA Australia or Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) had also helped businesses improve their corporate governance capacity rather than only accounting and auditing expertise, he added.
"Good knowledge in this field will help CEOs find out practical problems and loop-holes in their accounting systems as well as in management systems, enabling thorough resolutions," Son said.
The Government should also devise appropriate policies and legal frameworks to create favourable business environments which encourage the application of modern technologies. — VNS