Positive upswing in Members’ views about future prospects with actions in the pipeline.
I am delighted to report from my networking conversations that an increasing number of our Chamber members are now taking a forward looking stance. This is a definite reversal of the mood in the business community that I believe had begun to surface around May and June.
I would neatly summarise that as ‘grasping the mettle’ and seeking out all-important opportunities. I understand from the sharing of these insights with Chamber members that the approaches are taking on a variety of actions, plans and strategies.
Part of this more positive thinking is coming from discussing issues and seeking others’ views. It really is a case of ‘a problem shared is a problem halved’. I continue to espouse that as one of the most fundamental ways in which your Chamber aids and assists its membership.
Without breaking any confidentiality, I can reveal that a growing number of our members see the momentous decision made back in June to have opened new doors. It has also provided the catalyst for structured thinking and action plans.
In my business, we have found that putting down individual markers for particular activities is a positive and robust way to continue to develop the business and its profitability. By planning further ahead, it is possible to diarise some of the key events in the area that should be attended. Events from which significant benefits of participation and involvement are likely to accrue.
Take for instance MP Andrew Griffiths’ continuing initiative; the Burton Jobs Fair at the Pirelli Stadium. This event presents a ready-made opportunity to meet liked-minded business-owners and to discover the range of job opportunities on offer. Importantly, it is also a great event at which to recruit some of the best available talent in Burton and District.
Looking ahead, upskilling your teams is a proven way of enhancing your productivity. We have the major advantage in the town that Burton and South Derbyshire College provides highly sought-after skills, through the range and breadth of courses that are on offer.
At Yee Group, we supplement the courses attended by our apprentices with in-house training to develop a balanced programme for technical staff across the business. We know that it pays dividends almost immediately; and certainly into the longer term.
You may have seen the independent research carried out in the US and in the UK that has shown that the equivalent of an extra year of schooling can increase productivity by between 4.9 and 8.5 per cent in manufacturing; and between 5.9 and 12.7 per cent in the services sector.
Adding to this insight, another survey showed that on average, a 10 percent increase in workforce education level led to an 8.6 percent gain in total productivity. Conversely, a 10 percent increase in the value of equipment increased productivity by only 3.4 percent.
Continuing the theme of this column, skills training is relatively straight-forward to plan and execute. It can neatly fit in with your other strategies. It will act as a stimulus to all parts of your business. We use it to ensure that all operations are regularly maintained and updated; and, thus, able to function effectively in order to deliver a top-class service.
I welcome feedback and comment on this column and the work and activities of the Chamber. You can contact me at [email protected]
President of Burton and District Chamber of Commerce
Managing Director, Yee Group Limited