Belfast Telegraph

Big changes ahead, firms must focus on the basics


By Peter Legge

We stand on the threshold of a huge change to our economy and society but we still do not know exactly what form that could take, how fast it could happen and how big a change it may be.

If nothing else, businesses should prepare for 'no deal', and work out when plans need to be implemented to ensure continuity. Waiting for politicians to reach agreement is not an option but planning for all eventualities, if possible, is. We have been assisting firms on scenario planning, assessing how the different options impact their organisation, markets and suppliers. Identify opportunities that uncertainty and disruption in the market create. Where are the competitive advantages, can goods or services help others navigate this uncertain time, and are there opportunities to increase exports in the rest of the world or acquire undervalued assets?

Businesses should focus on basics such as protecting cashflow; insulating balance sheets; retaining and attracting talent; meeting customer needs; and removing unnecessary costs, to ensure they are as prepared as possible when the political deadlock finally breaks.

Peter Legge is tax partner at the Belfast office of Grant Thornton

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