As we mark the first anniversary of the initial COVD-19 lockdown, I don’t think there are many people who would argue that last year has been one of the toughest in living memory…
But we are here, and we keep hearing the mantra from Government, business etc, that having been through all this pain, we need to ‘build back better.’
At Afford Bond, we absolutely believe in that, and feel we have identified one of the key ways we can achieve it in the months and years to come.
MORE FREQUENT CONTACT
One of the unintended consequences of the economic fallout of the pandemic is that we have become closer to many of our clients. We have always prided ourselves as acting as a trusted advisor, getting ‘under the skin’ of what makes owners and Directors tick, so that we can look at their life goals and aspirations and make sure the way they run their businesses enables them to meet those wider plans – as well as looking after the balance sheets.
Over the last year, with constantly updated grants and loan schemes, furlough extensions and more recently, budget provisions, we have found ourselves in more regular contact with people.
Where we would once have had two or three formal face to face meetings a year, our commitment to support has meant more frequent interactions through Zoom and Teams – and even, on occasion, daily phone calls when clients have needed support through particularly difficult times and rapidly changing scenarios.
This level of contact has enabled our relationships to grow and reach new levels of understanding – which we believe will last long beyond the recent crises. In the short term, it has enabled us to help with a variety of specific issues including:
– Restructuring of companies to safeguard their business as much as possible from the uncertainties of the current economic climate
– A management buyout, to secure the succession of an IT business to its senior team
– The demerger of a professional services firm to ensure continuity of business for partners, moving forward
And from now on, we plan to stay just as close to the businesses we support: these days, we’re all (fairly) comfortable with virtual meetings, so we can maintain this level of interaction, whether it is being that sounding board to make sure fiscal plans we’ve agreed with clients stay on track – or perhaps tweaking them to suit changing times.
We’ll always enjoy getting together with people – seeing them in their own premises, and witnessing their operations first hand. The ‘virtual’ meetings are an enhancement not an ‘instead of’.
As Partner Paul Edwards, explains: ‘There used to be an advertising slogan – ‘It’s good to talk… but we’d like to take that further and say ‘Let’s keep talking.’
To find out more about the Afford Bond approach, and how it could benefit your business, why not get in touch with Paul for a no obligation chat. Contact: Paul.Edwards@affordbond.com