With 2022 coming to a close, we wanted to reflect back on a year that many of us won’t forget in a hurry. A year of global uncertainty, a year of change but most of all, a year of resilience. In our latest blog, we explore the ways we and our clients have not only survived, but thrived…
The War in Ukraine
2022 began with startling news that Russian troops were invading Ukraine, causing the displacement of many refugees to other countries and a humanitarian crisis. As NATO allies proposed sanctions on Russian exports including oil, the markets across the world fell sharply, with oil prices exceeding £80 a barrel for the first time in nearly 10 years.
The threat of war spilling into the UK and concern for the people of Ukraine was a heavy worry for many across the country, but after a couple of years of COVID crises, our experience is that our clients had learned to adopt a “Keep Calm and Carry On” attitude. This is something we’d witness over and over during the coming year.
The Year of Rising Costs
2022 was certainly the year of price increases across the board. Energy prices rose this year across households and businesses, with Martin Lews describing the increases as catastrophic. Sadly many businesses were forced to close their doors as they couldn’t meet the rising costs.
Inflation rose to over 11% this year, the highest rise in 40 years. The Bank of England increased interest to 3%, the highest rate in over 30 years. The war in Ukraine was blamed for the rising cost in fuel, which hit over £2 per litre in some areas before the government intervened and they fell slightly.
The “Mini Budget” of September caused a dramatic fall in the economy, with the pound hitting an all time low against the dollar and panic throughout the nation. During this time, we were particularly proud of our team, who kept their heads and consistently translated the updates for our clients, whilst providing strategies to steer their businesses through the uncertainty.
Who’s In Charge?
Well, it certainly was an interesting year in politics! Whatever side of the political spectrum you are on, I think we can all agree that things got a little wild!
From the Party Gate scandals, to daily resignations in Parliament, Boris Johnson becoming the first prime minister to be found guilty of a criminal offence in office, to the tussles over the Conservative leadership – there was always something going on.
After a lot of toing and froing, we now have the ex-Chancellor Rishi Sunak as the UK Prime Minister, which does allow for some relief. As the Chancellor in charge during the Covid pandemic, we can hopefully feel positive that he can keep his head during a crisis and see a way through. The new PM has warned that times will be tough, but with a plan in place that we can understand, we are in a great place to be able to help our clients navigate the “new, new normal”.
What Our Clients Learned During the Year of Resilience
After a challenging couple of years, our clients have become a lot calmer than perhaps they would have been with the continual onslaught of changes, price rises and decision makers in Government. During the Covid pandemic, they learned to “pivot” quite quickly, diversifying businesses where necessary and even generating new income streams. The pivoting of Covid was somewhat reactive however, which is understandable during “unprecedented times”.
Due to the uncertainties presented to businesses since 2020, many of our clients took a step back and assessed their businesses. We worked with them to build strong foundations for their business, apply for additional grants and funding and create strong plans for growth.
Now that we almost come to expect new changes on a weekly basis, we and our clients have learned to have several potential responses in place for any changes that may come. This allows us to respond to changes in a calm, organised manner whilst always focussing on the growth of the business.
Looking Ahead to 2023 After a Year of Resilience
Whilst we don’t know what the next year will hold, we do know that we and our clients have used this “year of resilience” to build upon the great work that they do and continue to thrive. We and they have put in place systems to allow us to adjust our plans if needed and do so with a positive mindset. We have all developed many new skills that will continue to serve us for years to come.
For now, we know that each and every one of our clients has been amazing and we can’t wait to see what awesomeness is created in 2023!
If you’re unsure about how 2023 will look for you and your business and need some help to build resilience, contact us to arrange a chat.