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  • Writer's pictureJohn Bridges

Getting 2021 off to a good start

Updated: Dec 1, 2020

Making Post-Brexit Q1 2021 a Success. Authored by John Bridges

This year, all organisations and their staff have had to react to many unexpected challenges and changes. Some of the current issues are coping with the UK’s 2nd Lockdown, managing remote hiring (and firing) with many people working from home globally, and preparing for an imminent yet unclear Brexit.

Then by January 2021, Brexit will have happened, either with a Deal or without – plus we could still be in lockdown. So, organisations will then have to cope with that change and adjust / change their strategy / organisation / operations / headcount / marketing accordingly to survive. Additionally, since 2020 has been so unexpectedly difficult, most senior leaders will be pretty exhausted and many staff will be change fatigued, and hence resistant to further change.

Making Q1 2021 a Success
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Vital Questions

Some of the key questions that the board need to address are:

  • What is overall market demand like, compared with what it was in February?

  • What is the likely sales turnover this year going to be? And the expected profit?

  • How will Brexit affect our business and operations?

  • What size of organisation can we now afford? What is the required staff skills mix?

  • What are the demands of our customers and have they changed?

  • What is our cash flow position? Are we at critical levels, and what rate are we burning cash?

  • How does our mission, vision and operating model need to change?

  • How has our competitive position changed? What do we now need to compete and grow?

  • How innovative and change-oriented are we as an organisation?

  • How resilient are we as an organisation?

  • How does the introduction of IR35 to the private sector in April affect us?

  • What is the size of the change needed in all our functions? Technology, finance, sales, marketing, HR, production, operations, procurement?

  • What are the main ways in which the organisation needs to be changed or transformed, and how long will that take? What investment is needed and what ROI expected?

  • How engaged and supportive are our employees?

  • Are we paying enough attention to employee well-being?

  • Where do we need our staff to be located and what is the face to face vs virtual working balance?

  • Can we manage the required transformation ourselves, or should we call in experts to shape and lead the transformation, and deliver the business benefits?

And with 2 Lockdowns reducing market demand for most products and services, the competitive rivalry, and the survival stakes generally, are extremely high. A few companies will out compete their rivals, most companies will change fairly slowly, and the laggards will generally fail or run out of cash. So, it’s especially important that the board gets its thinking clear and takes decisive and profitable action.


They have 2 ways of doing this:

  • Urge their senior managers and staff to do ‘more of the same’ or to change faster, or

  • Work/partner with skilled external experts who specialise in planning, driving, and supporting business transformation initiatives, and have done this many times

Getting Support

Using external experts has many advantages:

  • Reduces the risk of the transformation failing

  • Brings in knowledge and ideas from other companies and sectors (e.g. Lean from manufacturing is now applied to office work)

  • They have no investment in the past or present and hence can see clearly what needs to change and why

  • Adds capable management talent when it is needed, and then leaves

  • Skills, knowledge, and capability transfer to internal staff working in the transformation team

  • Independence of thought, outside any company politics, focused solely on helping the organisation change, pivot or transform as it must to be successful

  • Engaging this support in a virtual and remote business context is more straightforward, arranging meetings, briefings and workshops between externals and the business is also simpler since the logistics of location availability etc are more readily managed. The level of support and areas of focus from externals can be more easily flexed dynamically as the business evolves when working in this way.

At Intaconsult Limited, we can help you understand the nature of the competitive challenge now, and the best way to respond to this:

  • We can help you lead and manage the transformation across your organisation

  • We can reduce the ‘change risk’ drastically, and you benefit from the experience and skills of people who do this kind of work every day

  • We have proven skills and experience in:

Strategy Development

Business Transformation & Change

Programme Planning & Leadership

Financial Management & Efficiency

Employee Engagement & Communications

Coaching & Mentoring

Benefit Realisation

If you want talk to us give us a call on 07801 100 100

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