Company cultures are running on fumes: should we return to the office?

By Guy Corbet, Fourteen Forty

We’ve learned an awful lot about working from home.  It has given many people the freedom to combine work with more family time.  It has been the miracle that has kept the economy spluttering on through the lockdowns.   

Many now don’t want to go back to the old normal drudgery of commuting to the office. 

In the cold light of day, and in the long run, will that position really be possible to maintain?  And are we seeing that company cultures are already running on fumes? 

Five 2021 predictions to ignore (or at least take with a pinch of salt)

By Gareth Streeter, Fourteen Forty

Writers of “2021 predictions” lists have indulged the temptation to be both dramatic and definitive.  And they all follow one clear narrative.  Covid will depart.  It will leave behind it a world that is forever changed.

But does the available evidence bear this out?  Or have some of our would-be futurologists over-egged the pudding? 

What business wants to see from the new business secretary

By James Boyd-Wallis, Fourteen Forty

New business secretary Kwasi Kwarteng MP is on paper one of the most pro-free enterprise ministers to run the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) in years.

Weak Links #10: getting back to business

How should business prepare for 2021?

The vaccine is enabling politicians, business and the public to contemplate a return to normal.  But, as the Chancellor says, “the economic emergency is just beginning”.

So, how can businesses and brands adapt to and benefit from the changes in consumer behaviour? What should they do to prepare their people and their workplaces for the return?  How can we tackle late payments for good?

We hope you enjoy this edition of Weak Links and we wish you all a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year.

The return to the office

By Katie Simpson, managing director, corporate affairs and financial, of global recruitment firm Hanson Search

There has been much discussion about how the business world, will change following Covid. There is a wide consensus that when we return to normal, we, well…won’t. In short, there is now effectively no normal to return to.

How “conversational commerce” will be on the rise in the run up to Christmas

By Laura Beaumont, PR manager, at tech firm Infobip

Brands want to develop closer connections with their customers, especially during biggest shopping event of the year. 

One way they can do this is to have real-time conversations with customers they want to sell to.  This has become known as “conversational commerce”, and it is easy for a business to misjudge it.    

The even more Spending Review

Today the Chancellor Rishi Sunak delivered the Government’s Spending Review, to allocate spending across departments and projects.

Usually a spending review covers five years. Today’s covered just next year, a sign of the C19 disruption to the government’s plans and finances. 

Weak Links #9: time to bounce back

How should business rebuild post Cover-19?

The first anniversary of Covid-19 in the UK is drawing close.  Businesses have done what they can to survive and now must plan how to bounce back.  

But how should firms communicate around these challenges?  Is remote working here to stay?  How should responsible firms behave?