Firms must adapt to big political shifts, Lincolnshire Directors’ Briefing warns

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More than 170 business leaders came together at the annual Duncan & Toplis Directors’ Briefing at Belton Woods Hotel in Grantham on November 25.

Entitled ‘Scanning the Horizon’, the briefing covered topics as diverse as Donald Trump, utilising the latest technology in business and how waking up to the possibilities of online marketing and social media can benefit those who take the plunge.

The audience also heard in-depth analysis of Chancellor Phillip Hammond MP’s first, and last Autumn Statement as well as the work the Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) has been doing to encourage growth in the region.

The keynote speaker was Director General of the Institute of Directors Simon Walker.

Simon suggested to the audience that predicting the implications of Britain leaving the European Union was almost impossible, but that he was confident businesses could remain outward-looking and confident.

He said:

Despite the result of the referendum and some big changes in politics both here and in the US, business leaders in this country are the ones who will be able to adapt and succeed.

Mark Berrisford-Smith, Head of Economics at HSBC UK talked about the perceived effects businesses are experiencing in light of the Brexit result, namely the business community being more cautious about capital expenditure and consumers feeling worse off as inflation reaches higher levels than wage rises.

He also talked of the cautious nature of the Chancellor’s recent Autumn Statement, saying that cutting the deficit was a ‘nod in the right direction.’

Managing Director at Duncan & Toplis Adrian Reynolds, said: “This year’s briefing was one that both inspired and sparked debate among what was a very engaged audience.

“The mix between real implications from a tumultuous 2016 and some entertaining insights into company stories from Neil Everatt of Software Europe and Peter Watson from Chatty Imp made it a truly memorable event.”