Check out our blogs section where Chamber representatives, members and high-profile business figures write about a range of topics. If you are a member and want to submit a blog, please click here.

What coaching can and cannot do for an organisation

By The Leadership Coaches | The Leadership Coaches

Coaching effectively supports leaders, teams, managers, and even new talent within small, medium, and large-scale organisations worldwide. Due to the benefits that coaching has, it is often seen as an investment. In fact, in recent years, the number of organisations employing both internal and external coaches has risen considerably. Whilst coaching can bring about positive changes such as improved behaviours, attitudes, team performance, and conflict resolution, there are often misconceptions surrounding what coaching can and cannot do for an organisation. In this blog, we share a few examples of what coaching can and cannot do for an organisation. Coaching can support people and teams at...

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Greenwashing - What is it? Why is it bad? And what's being done to combat it?

By Kirstin Roberts | Freeths

So many businesses are making environmentally linked claims about their products and services to sell more of them. They might say that their product doesn't harm the environment or, as a minimum, is more sustainable than the competitors’. When those claims are misleading or false, that's greenwashing. What is being done to combat greenwashing? The Advertising and Standards Agency (ASA) has had high-profile greenwashing cases, resulting in those brands being made to remove adverts that contain such claims. Likewise, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) published a green claims code at the end of last year to help businesses avoid greenwashing. Its advice is; if you follow the six principles...

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Bounce back loans risking disqualification investigation: What are the directors’ rights?

By Andrew Garland | The Wilkes Partnership LLP

There have been widespread reports that the Government-backed loan schemes implemented to assist ailing businesses during the pandemic were on occasion subject to abuse. The Insolvency Service is carefully scrutinising the conduct of directors whose businesses took out Government-backed loans, where there has now been default and the business has failed. This article explores what will alert company directors to the fact that their conduct is being investigated and what action they should take to mitigate the risk and consequences of being disqualified from directorship. Fraud or no fraud? The bounce back loan scheme was one of the most utilised schemes during the pandemic, with a total of...

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Top tips for engaging apprentices

By Digital Innovators | Digital Innovators

We were recently asked by Solihull Chamber to share our top tips for engaging apprentices with fellow Chamber members during #SolihullHour! Apprenticeships play a vital part in the work we do to bridge the gap between young people, educators, and businesses across Solihull and Birmingham. So, let’s delve into our top tips for engaging young people to apply for apprenticeships with your organisation! Do your research and make sure apprenticeships work for both parties. Before doing anything, you should do some thorough research into apprenticeships to make sure that having an apprentice is the right choice for your business, and that you will be able to support the young person who takes...

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How leaders can enhance employee retention

By The Leadership Coaches | The Leadership Coaches

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, people worldwide are revaluating their values, contemplating whether their current roles and duties align with them, and many have decided it’s time for a change. In the UK alone, research shows that more than one-third of employees are searching for new job opportunities. Leaders play an integral role in employee retention as they set the tone and culture for their teams. If employees feel valued, appreciated, and as though they are part of a team working towards a common goal, they are much more likely to stick around. With the great resignation set to continue, leaders must review how they can enhance employee retention. What is employee retention? Employee...

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TLS changes to Sage 50 Accounts - everything you need to know

By Softext | Softext

Sage has announced that from September 2022, certain versions of the 50 Accounts software will stop working. This affects both perpetual and subscription versions ranging from version 20 all the way up to version 26.2. Read our FAQ’s below to find out everything you need to know: What is TLS? TLS is an encryption protocol that encodes and protects Sage data as it moves between different application processes. Sage currently uses it for the Sage Licence Service and AutoUpdate to check that you are using valid Sage software each time you log in. How does TLS work? The TLS protocol has three primary purposes Encryption to hide the data from third parties as it is being transferred Authentication...

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Case: Directors guilty of deceit and unlawful means conspiracy

By Leanne Schneider-Rose | Sydney Mitchell LLP

The case concerned a businessman who subscribed for £200,000 worth of shares in a company that he saw advertised on a website seeking angel investors. Having previously met with two of the company's directors, he was impressed by their professed plans for growth and trading success. The impression of a business in good financial health and with a promising future was reinforced by slide deck presentations and financial modelling documents. The directors said nothing to suggest that the company was insolvent or struggling financially and also failed to mention that rent on the company’s premises was significantly overdue. Less than two years after the businessman invested in the company it was...

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Preventing proximity bias in the return to the office

By Rena Magdani | Freeths LLP

‘Proximity bias’ refers to the unconscious tendency to give preferential treatment to those in our immediate vicinity. The pandemic has increased home/hybrid working and increased the physical distance between employer and employee, potentially limiting career opportunities and progression.  As offices begin to get back to some normality, it is important for employers to understand proximity bias and the steps they can take to ensure that it is minimised. Proximity Bias can be seen in a number of workplace scenarios, but some examples include: Onsite employees leading hybrid meetings and leaving remote employees fewer opportunities to contribute; Onsite employees being delegated more rewarding/promotable...

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What is a psychologically healthy and safe workplace?

By Sheila Lord | BMR Health and Wellbeing Ltd

To understand what a psychologically healthy and safe workplace is, it may first warrant a definition of mental health. The World Health Organisation (WHO) defines mental health as: “A state of well-being in which every individual realizes his or her own potential can cope with the normal stresses of life can work productively and fruitfully and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.” The definition is clearly focused on the positive aspects of mental health as opposed to focusing purely on the absence of illness or stigma. This is important to recognise as it is a common misconception that mental health is purely an absence of illness. Somewhat similarly, a mentally healthy...

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Climate change is a global issue that creates complex challenges for us all

By Ed Maughan | BT Enterprise

After a period of uncertainty, one thing that is certain is that we’re facing a climate emergency. But rather than treating this moment with trepidation, we should see it as a unique opportunity to transform the future of work and our way of life for the better.  Climate change is a global issue that creates complex challenges for us all. It requires us to come together – both businesses and communities – to generate the innovative solutions that will help to bring about sustainable change.  We at BT recognise our responsibility to help lead the transition into a more sustainable world, as one of the UK’s leaders in telecommunications. We believe we can meet this challenge head on by taking...

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