Welcome to the GBCC blog. Here you will be able to access insights from Chamber representatives, members and high-profile business figures on a range of subjects, from tips and tricks, business support and hot topics. What’s more, if you’re a member, you can submit your article to feature in our blog. Continue reading to learn more.

Growth Through Unlocking Potential

By Dr Fiona Aldridge | West Midlands Combined Authority

The West Midlands has enormous economic potential but also faces significant challenges, as businesses struggle with trade frictions, with the rising cost of doing business, and the challenges associated with net zero and technological disruption. Faced too with a tight labour market and the changing demands of both workers and customers, businesses across the region are having to rethink how they operate. All of this means that good leadership and management skills have never been more important or in greater demand. And yet here in the West Midlands, many managers – particularly those in smaller and medium-sized businesses – have not had any formal leadership and management training to equip...

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Transforming surplus food into nutritious meals for people in need

By FareShare Midlands | FareShare Midlands

Since July 2021, FareShare Midlands have been trialling the production of healthy and nutritious meals made using surplus food. Our ‘Community Meals’ are made daily at Nottingham City Council’s headquarters – Loxley House, by our hardworking Kitchen Team. Staff and volunteers work together to prep, cook and package the meals using surplus food from within the food industry that would have otherwise gone to waste.Our kitchen team have been busy trialling the best bulk-cooking methods to efficiently cook meals in high volumes. Mirroring large-scale manufacturing, the team prepare and cook components of meals to be assembled at the final stages – utilising as much surplus food as possible.We have...

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5 Ways To Become a Better Leader

By Sue Stockdale and Rebekah Litherland | The Leadership Coaches

The start of a new year often sees us reflecting on our skills, strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities for the future. Now two months into 2023, you may know where you'd like to take your skills this year.   Like many other leaders, you may wish to improve your communication skills to support you in enabling your team. You may also have a goal to increase your confidence in taking action – even in times of uncertainty – or learn how to inspire your team better.  If you are looking to enhance your leadership skills this year, you've come to the right place. In this blog, we share five ways to become a better leader with expertise from leadership coach Sue S.   What Does Leadership Mean to...

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Open your mind to a workplace vending machine in 2023

By Alistair Ward | Coinadrink Limited

Vending machines have been a part of our lives for a long time. As technology continues to develop new possibilities, they are becoming more and more common in the workplace. They offer a convenient way to get a quick snack or drink without leaving the premises, but the flexibility of a vending machine means it can offer so much more than just refreshments. And that’s exciting news for manufacturing sites, offices, schools, hospitals and so many more environments.   Hot drink vending machines Some of the biggest developments in workplace vending machines have been through hot drinks. Hot drink vending machines dispense fresh bean coffee, fresh leaf tea, hot chocolate and so much more. As...

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Hybrid mail: All you need to know

By bakergoodchild | bakergoodchild

The word Hybrid can seem like a buzz word in 2023, we now drive hybrid vehicles and have hybrid working arrangements. We have made these adaptations with the future in mind, but one thing that is still stuck in the past, is the way in which businesses perceive and execute mail. Hybrid mail may just be the solution for businesses looking to future-proof their customer & prospect communications.   So, what is hybrid mail? Quite simply, Hybrid mail is a solution which offers businesses the ability to digitally transfer files via a virtual print driver or portal, to a professional, third-party organisation ,to carry out the print, fulfilment and postage process. The solution was initially developed...

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How To Support Employees Observing Ramadan

By Faizah Azeem | Solihull College & University Centre

Solihull College & University Centre’s Marketing & PR officer and BAME Staff Network Lead, Faizah Azeem, has designed a Ramadan Guide 2023 and CPD Session for organisations to implement good practice and inclusivity during the month of Ramadan.  Ramadan 2023 is set to begin today, 23 March, ending 29 or 30 days later with the Eid celebration. Dates vary depending on the sighting of the moon as the Islamic Calendar is a lunar calendar.   This blog is designed to equip businesses with a better understanding of Ramadan so they are able to better support their employees who will be fasting throughout this period.    What is Ramadan?  Ramadan is the month in which the Quran was revealed to the...

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Three simple steps to having great career development conversations

By Lynsey Kitching Website | CAPE Coaching & Development

A challenge that often comes up for managers in coaching or on development programmes is how to have a great career development conversation with their team. It can be difficult to know where to start. It can be tempting to release our ‘advice monster’ and tell people what role we think they should do. We can make assumptions what’s right for someone else’s career without asking what really matters to them. If we haven't had great development conversations with our own manager it can be hard to know what a good career conversation looks like, especially if we haven't had other role models to show us the way. Here are three simple steps to having great career conversations with your team! Start...

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Managing production as a Jamaican pattie manufacturer

By Lewis Bryan | Cleone Foods Ltd

Island Delight is part of the UK-founded company Cleone Foods – a company founded by Wade Lyn. When he moved to the UK from Jamaica, he quickly discovered that there was a gap in the market for tasty Jamaican cuisine. So, with a love of that Jamaican cuisine and a desire to share the tantalising flavours with the rest of the country, Wade launched Island Delight Jamaican Patties. We offer our Jamaican patties online and in supermarkets throughout the UK. When it comes to Jamaican pattie production here in the UK, Island Delight feel that they have truly got it right. Despite now being a market leader in these savoury treats, the company has never lost sight of the quality and love that goes...

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How To Be Accommodating For Your Pregnant Employees

By Paul Palmer | Coppice HR

Less than 1 in 5 women feel confident returning to work after maternity leave, therefore consider handing in their notice – don’t lose valuable employees for not being accommodating.   Women can find pregnancy to be both exciting and challenging, particularly if they are experiencing work stresses and lacking support from their employer. Inclusive companies are able to support expectant parents during one of the most exciting periods in their life.   As an employer, it is your duty to ensure you can accommodate pregnant employees from the moment they find out they are pregnant until they are settled back into work post-maternity leave.   6 Ways You Can Accommodate Your Pregnant Employees: Complete...

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From email to collaboration: Maximizing productivity with Microsoft 365

By Scott Brant | inspire cloud technologies

Are you in need of a new IT solution? It's natural to turn to search engines to find hundreds of different solutions that require only a credit card to get started. However, you may be overlooking an amazing IT service you already pay for today, that can deliver solutions to a wide range of problems. Yes, we're talking about Microsoft 365. Used by over 345 million people around the world, Microsoft 365 has so many capabilities when it comes to IT solutions. Its early beginnings were very much focused on email services, and the cost benefits of moving your email to Microsoft 365 were significant. But over the years, Microsoft 365 has evolved and become much more than just an email platform. Before...

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