Inspiring growth in Yorkshire
10th November 2020
The Fastest 50 in Yorkshire has run every year for the past decade. But 2020 is not the same as any other year.
In spring this year Aspire Leeds was booked, the champagne was on ice and we were set to bring the business community of Yorkshire together for our annual celebration of the very best in business. Just 10 days before the event, all that changed – the pandemic escalated and we all pressed pause.
Throughout the year, we have considered what to do next with this well-established initiative – how to use the momentum of Ward Hadaway’s Fastest 50 and what it stands for to help businesses who are adapting and striving in the most difficult of circumstances.
When we went back to the roots of what the Fastest 50 is about – celebrating entrepreneurialism, highlighting business success, using those who have been there and done that to act as a guiding light – we felt that a series featuring a range of businesses sharing their experiences could inspire others.
There is no crystal ball, no magic wand, no right or wrong way to do business right now. But there are themes that many of the businesses we know and work with have in common, not least flexibility, agility and adaptability.
So we commissioned a series of articles in the coming weeks under the banner of Inspiring Growth in Yorkshire; talking to some of those in our business community about both their past growth and success, but also about how they have responded to the pandemic.
We hope this proves to be both inspirational and valuable for those who are facing their own business challenges.
But at the outset we also want to reflect on the steps our firm has taken in the face of this pandemic.
We have tried and tested disaster recovery plans in place, which kicked into action as soon as the scale of the impact of the pandemic became clear. We are continuing to focus on how we keep our people and our clients safe, protecting their health and wellbeing whilst providing the service that our clients need and deserve. The measures that we adopted back in March have been regularly reviewed and adapted – they have served us and our clients extremely well and they will continue to do so.
Throughout the year, we have listened to the needs of our markets and focused our communications on providing clarity in the face of great economic and regulatory change. In March we built an online hub to house a library of Frequently Asked Questions which we have constantly added to, covering everything from furlough to CBILS, force majeure to data protection, and everything in between.
We made this available to the whole region and shared it with as many people as we could, through membership bodies, regional agencies and the media.
All of which is why we want you to hear our message loud and clear – we are here for you whatever the pandemic throws at us all.
So as part of this resolute message, we wanted to create something positive and stimulating at a time of unprecedented uncertainty. We hope you enjoy this series Inspiring Growth in Yorkshire, founded on the essence of our Fastest 50 and what it does best – celebrating our great region, and the businesses in it.
This article originally appears in The Yorkshire Post on 10 November 2020.