The eleventh in the series of PM+M’s ‘Navigating the Now and Next’ virtual panel events took place on Thursday 30 September, aimed at helping businesses manage the ongoing challenges of the present and understand what support is available as we look to the future.
Hosted by our very own Neil Welsh, with digital hosting managed by our friends at The Landmark in Burnley, we welcomed panellists:
Helen Cutler – Relationship Director, Lloyds Bank
Louise Frankland – Managing Director, Mansfield Pollard
Leon Calverley – Director, Door 4
Jaydee Davis – Operations Director, Community & Business Partners
Following the opening introduction and welcome, Helen Cutler kicked off proceedings by discussing her role as a relationship director at Lloyds Bank, in particular Lloyds latest advertising slogan, ‘Helping Britain Recover’. Helen reassured business owners that banks are open for business. If a company is looking to invest in a project or expand, speak to your bank, as Lloyds are lending, contrary to belief that banks are closed for business.
Helen also discussed the need for businesses to be open and honest in their communication with their banks, especially if help is needed. Currently, many businesses are struggling with supply shortages due to Brexit, and by communicating any issues with their bank, they can work through the problems together. Agreeable across the panel was the need to obtain advice from a professional if you are in this situation, as talking in tandem should help the business find a solution. Cashflow modelling can be extremely useful in this regard with ‘what if’ variables showing the projected impact of changes to pricing or credit terms.
Louise Frankland went on to discuss her experience of a management buy-out (MBO) at Mansfield Pollard, which was finalised in February 2020, just before the first lockdown. Louise bought the business after it being in the Pollard family for 155 years. She described the process of the MBO as very smooth, thanks to her brilliant relationship with the previous owners and a great team of experts and advisers. From start to finish, the completion of the MBO took only six weeks.
As mentioned by Helen, Louise has also experienced supply shortage issues due to Brexit. It was highlighted by Louise the importance of a good relationship with your suppliers in order to push through such issues and find a solution. Communication is key being the recurring message.
Next up, Neil introduced Leon Calverley of Door4, who explored the importance of collaborative working in an office environment, especially post-pandemic. Leon discussed the difficulties for young people of ‘learning a craft over Zoom’ – a somewhat impossible task. Although, on some occasions, a hybrid working model may be beneficial to employees and employers, in most cases, the best value is created when people are together around a table, sharing ideas and including everyone, something which may not be viable over Teams or Zoom, when only one person is able to speak at a time. Leon also explained how he has had team members requesting to work in the office due to their emotional wellbeing as they struggle to work at home – this is something to consider when thinking about working model’s post-pandemic, so too the cultivation of a firm’s values and culture.
Our final panellist was Jaydee Davis who discussed what Community & Business Partners (CBP) does and how they can help business owners through the BOOST programme. Companies are able to access 12 hours of mentoring to support them with a particular business requirement. With well-practiced match-making skills a mentor is paired with a mentee based on business and personal best-fit. Jaydee explained how CBP has recently reached a global scale as an endorsing body for the Home Office, supporting and mentoring businesses who are expanding to the UK for the duration of their visa.
Neil brought the panel discussion to a close and opened the floor to the audience, obtaining further input and comment from Dave Scholes (Mindsight/Six Connections), Andy Platt (Simply Corporate), Adam Holden (Burnley Borough Council), Jen Goodwin (Jackson Lees Group), Sarah Clemson (Latitude Marketing), Alistair Topping (Lloyds), Helen Hesketh (Hesketh Jones Construction) and Claire Rhodes (The Landmark).
If anyone would like to be introduced to members of the panel or audience, included in the invite for next month’s event or wish to speak to one of the PM+M team about our services, please get in touch with Neil Welsh via the button below.