Review: BIG 50 Event 2016

By Dean

04 Feb 2016

Lancashire Business View hosted business leaders from across the county for the BIG 50 event at Stanley House Hotel and Spa with the aim of giving guidance on driving profitability and growth into their businesses.

The BIG 50 ranks Lancashire-based businesses by turnover. Responsible for significant contributions to supply chain employment and to the economic wellbeing of the county, the BIG 50 Lancashire businesses employ more than 51,000 people and have a combined turnover of over £11.7bn.

The guest speakers were put through their paces covering topics including business values, investing in people and processes, employee engagement and skills.

Gavin Wright, CEO of Forbes Solicitors, said: “You can’t be risk-averse. When you go in to a business and see that people are frightened of making a mistake, all creativity and innovation is suppressed.

“If you engage everyone equally in what you’re trying to achieve and they all see their part in that, by definition you should get an increase in engagement.”

“We have a saying of treat the customers how you’d want your mother to be treated so it gets the message across and ensures that all are treated right.

Helen Broughton, director of people and standards, Danbro: “We have worked hard to keep the team small, we have team nights out, our departments celebrate together and we have company events as well.

“You’ve got to find ways of listening to what staff are saying and act on it.”

“I do a ‘Walk with Andy’ around Preston Dock, where we go for a walk, which takes away the formalities, and come up with all sorts of fantastic ideas for the business and solve any problems.

Mark Schofield , director at Haworths, the business responsible for collating the BIG 50, introduced the morning session and said: “This year we’ve seen sales increase, profits increase by a massive 83 per cent, but employees have dropped, which suggests that companies are looking more at productivity.

Sue Taylor, principle of Accrington and Rossendale College, co-sponsor of the event, added: “What we do through our Coppice Training arm is work with businesses across Lancashire to ensure current and future workforces have the skills and abilities to move in a fast changing business environment, to add value and make a difference to your bottom line.

Jason Gledhill, area director for HSBC, co-sponsor of the event, said: “We’re here to help business in Lancashire thrive and prosper and do that by connecting people using our extensive global network to help businesses not just look at expansion in the UK but in overseas markets.

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