News

We can't rest on our economic success laurels

3 min read

31 October 2016

We’ve had lift off at Heathrow, the green light from Nissan and economic success has grown in the three months since the European Union (EU) referendum.

It’s been a good week for UK plc. However, there are still at least another 120 days to go before we actually find out what life outside of the EU looks like and would do well to knuckle down in the meantime for the sake of economic success and businesses everywhere.

There have been far too many column inches devoted to gloating commentators massaging their egos and telling us that they were right, the economy hasn’t flat lined after the vote to leave the EU, which is great, but this isn’t a football match, the issue transcends political allegiances and we must all pull in the same direction.

Instead of acting like school children in the playground, politicians and business leaders should be doubling their efforts to create more economic success and an environment that shows the world that we’re open for business and not just celebrating the fact that we avoided recession.

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Doing just enough to get by is a bad strategy in all walks of life, especially in the ruthless world of business, yet I fear that’s just what is happening. It’s taken some of our brightest individuals almost 50 years to decide what to do about our airports, which are in desperate need of additional capacity.

By 2030, when Heathrow’s third runway is complete, how long will it be before we encounter the same issue with capacity? If we’re going to really attract international investors and establish infrastructure links that give our exporters a competitive advantage then we need to go the whole hog and rush through permission for Gatwick’s expansion.

The same applies to businesses up and down the country. Each must not get complacent or do things half-heartedly. When I set out with my bag of tools and made a few hundred pounds, which was a hell of a lot back in those days, I didn’t give myself a pat on the back and put my feet up over the weekend. I worked even harder, which enabled me to hire my first employee and invest more and more in growing my business until it became the largest independent plumbing company in London.

Not one to rest on my laurels, I took the business to the next level by creating Pimlico Plumbing and Heating Merchants, which not only reduced the cost of parts but created a brand new source of income.

Well done is better than well said, proactivity is a key ingredient in the recipe for success and if we’re to cook up a storm and develop a business friendly environment that will withstand the unknown come March 2019 and produce and further economic success, then we had better stop all of the pointless posturing and crack on.