Good post SMS! This is very true and relevant in Singapore and many Asian Countries.
One can also break it down again from MNC, medium and small enterprise, it's kind of like the hierarchy in civilian life in many Countries, your communication skills matter.
I think we can agree that graphic design has got a long yard stick and if one does have any idea of creative arts, then it is even more difficult to hand over the task, art is very personal to every designer, and business developers, so its about satisfying needs, that are not at all tangible.
Many marketing & sales MBA's do not have a creative side, and cannot relate to what should be expressed in brand imaging, which is very important, so Identifying a graphic designer that can be relied upon to deliver something useable, is an asset to any company,
I have seen my fair share of bad advertising and when it is bad I mean very bad, and one is paying for a design to encourage sales. Not to advertise at a car boot sale.
What I really love about this website, is the ability to pull on peoples knowledge and strengths, not weaknesses, but it is a chat forum, so it should really be taken light heartedly unless it is located in a folder for serious talk.
Even then you will have clowns like me, that will seek out alternatives, because that is my nature, if i can do something easier, or it increase my margins, i will evaluate the procedures.
The problem with an open market is that the price one pays is relevant to a companies target market and marketing strategy, so that what we see, maybe called an exploitation factor which is always there, but you do not have to pay the price. what is value for money?
I've had work done by UK design, very professional and highly competitive, when I compared to the local designers, so really its a matter of what is your budget, can I accommodate.
Now to be here in Singapore, and to help contribute may also include, the time it takes, to educate a local that is exceptionally talented yet lacks the personal skills in customer relations.
So it is a give and take problem that needs to be looked at, not only educational ability skills. For a MNC it's entertainment money, for a startup businesses is being developed, its a role of the dice, they cannot afford to employ the wrong person. Expansion needs a very careful planning procedure that includes, what if!
The worst scenarios are the nightmare, alternatives procedure needs to be in place to ensure you survivability.
SMS: But, if you want to know the truth, I personally don't give a damn what they wear. I wear a polo shirt and jeans in the office every day. I also meet clients the same way unless they are government contracts (~60-70% of all our business).
Basically if you are not capable of maintaining MNC rates, you become localized, and it may even drop in accordance with your true abilities, who knows.