Can We Protect Innovation from the Fallout of Brexit?
Overcoming uncertainty in the face of Brexit
In these increasingly tumultuous political times, with Brexit knocking at the door and no coherence between our elected representatives, alignment between parties or a clear understanding of the will of the people it is difficult for business to be able to establish a consistent strategy in the face of these unknowns. It is quite likely that we will see impact to sales, supply chain, economic support, staffing and to our customer base as a result of this lack of clarity.
At Innovation Developments and in the course of our day-to-day engagement with businesses around the UK and across a wide range of market sectors we hear the above message constantly as businesses revert to the normal conservative responses of reducing R&D activities, reverting to internal efficiency improvements to drive profitability and battening down the hatches to weather the impending storm.
However, we as leaders of our businesses all know that this instinct, although understandable, is one we must resist at all costs for one simple reason; change and uncertainty can help drive growth if we adopt innovative principles to drive business adaptation.
In a few cases we have seen businesses employ a proactive attitude to these challenges and they have done so by running toward the change and unknown. By embracing the situation and using it to drive a new level of activity around new product development and supply chain management strategy, these businesses will be well positioned with innovative, category leading products and a robust, versatile supply chain fuelling this innovation with strategically targeted deployment of internal resources.
Allied to out-sourced production of products that are either approaching end of life or are legacy but essential to customer service requirement offers a combination of consistency of offering with optimised margin and centralisation of new product development, new product implementation and in-house manufacture of all products core to market differentiation and core margin generation.
An example of this is a local business to our prototyping facility who have a forty-year trading history in the production of automotive components. They employ over one hundred staff and have been family owned and run since their incorporation. Core to their business is the preservation of jobs and the continuation of their core brand differentiation of quality, performance and value.
By outsourcing their legacy product production for they allowed new products to be accelerated through their process and onto the shop floor reducing new product costs, bringing production versatility with reduced time to market and doing this through internal funding resulting from the increased margin from outsourcing products they were obliged to provide to legacy customers.
Resulting from this, the business has grown significantly in the last two years and has managed to move to an enviable position in the market, landing multiple OEM contracts and allowing new revenue channels to be established.
We feel that businesses demonstrating these characteristics of taking the fight to the challenge are the ones who will define the robust business and brands who through their own positivity, proactivity and culture will be the ones defining tomorrow’s markets and setting examples we can all be inspired by on our own daily challenges.