Business Champion Awards triumph for coach Polston

Business Champion Awards triumph for coach Polston

One of the UK’s leading business strategists and performance coaches, Will Polston, has been named as the Business Enabler of the year at the annual Business Champion Awards.

The Essex-based Polston was among over 300 guests at the East Wintergarden in Canary Wharf, with finalists represented in 14 categories with 140 finalists vying for top spot.

Polston is renowned for his transformative approach to helping clients to break through their barriers and achieve more than they ever felt possible.

Will originally achieved “traditional success” with an international career as a broker but despite this he found himself feeling unfulfilled. It was only following a personal development seminar, that he finally gained the clarity that deep down, his belief that “money equals happiness” was not true and what he really wanted to do was empower others to achieve their dreams as he believes this has a positive impact on others too –  something he calls the ripple effect.

Speaking about the award win and his approach to coaching and development, Polston said; ‘I am absolutely humbled to have won this award. I was up against a phenomenal group of people and we all have different approaches but one common mission – … Read More

VAT expert calls for reform of “Britain’s most contentious tax” on 50th anniversary

VAT expert calls for reform of “Britain’s most contentious tax” on 50th anniversary

As VAT reaches a historic milestone of 50 years in UK law, the head of VAT at an organisation supporting more than 4,500 businesses in the East Midlands is calling for drastic reform of Britain’s most contentious tax.

From April 2022 to February 2023, HMRC reports that it collected a staggering £150.5 billion from VAT alone – but with 428,615 UK businesses closing in 2022 amid unprecedented operating costs and energy prices, there are calls for clearer regulation to avoid unexpected charges.

Head of VAT at Duncan & Toplis, Christine Newitt, says: “Valued Added Tax is a prolific source of revenue for the government, behind only National Insurance and Income Tax – but it’s easily the most contested and contentious tax for UK business owners.

“In the five decades since VAT came into force on April 1, 1973, it has been a constant minefield for businesses struggling to navigate a system with more exceptions than it has rules – often resulting in unexpected interpretations by HMRC even for those of us in the profession who understand the tax.”

Christine represents businesses on the VAT and duties group of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEWRead More

Welcome rise for UK car production

Welcome rise for UK car production

UK car production rose 13.1% in February, up to 69,707 units, according to the latest figures published today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).

Factories made an additional 8,050 cars, with volumes buoyed by an easing of supply chain shortages – notably of semiconductors – which have bedevilled the global industry since the early months of 2021.

Production for both home and overseas markets rose by double digits, up 20.3% and 11.5% respectively, with exports driving the overall uplift. 56,634 cars were produced to fulfil global orders, up from 50,786 a year before and accounting for 81.2% of output, with the majority of these exports heading into the UK’s largest trading partner, the EU.

Shipments to the EU rose 6.5%, helping to offset declines to the US and China, providing further evidence of the need for continued free trade across the Channel. Exports to Turkey, Japan, Australia and South Korea, meanwhile, also rose, collectively by 85.0%, and together represented a total of 6,498 cars, or 11.5% of exports.

The UK’s automotive industrial transition to hybrid, plug-in hybrid and battery electric vehicles continued, with combined volumes surging 72.2% from 15,905 to a total of 27,392 units and accounting … Read More

SMEs are at risk of losing a David and Goliath battle for talent

SMEs are at risk of losing a David and Goliath battle for talent

Small businesses are in a David and Goliath battle for talent. Research has found that almost half of SME workers are looking for a new role, compared with 39% of those at large businesses.

Such a talent drain could have a huge impact on SMEs, especially at a time when businesses need to hold onto their best talent to get through tumultuous times.

The good news is SMEs are aware of this battle and are taking action. They’re investing more in their people’s wellbeing and recognising the importance of culture and a happy and healthy workforce. But while SMEs are on the right trajectory, there’s more to be done for them to win the talent battle.

SME workers, for instance, are happier at work – with 65% saying they were satisfied in their current role. They are also less likely to be struggling with their mental health, with those working at SMEs more likely to say their mental health has improved in the past year than those working at larger organisations.

Vicky Walker, Group Director of People at Westfield Health, commented: “For small businesses, it’s not issues like quiet quitting they need to worry about, it’s stealth quitting. This is … Read More

Friends of the Earth lawyers poised to act if revised Net Zero Strategy falls short   

Friends of the Earth lawyers poised to act if revised Net Zero Strategy falls short   

Today’s government announcements on energy security and climate change are inadequate and risk failing to meet UK climate targets, says Friends of the Earth.

These announcements are likely to be part of a revised net zero strategy, which the government is required to publish by the end of this week following a successful legal challenge by Friends of the Earth, ClientEarth and Good Law Project. More details on this are expected later today (Thursday). The revised NZS needs to demonstrate how UK carbon emissions will fall in line with legally binding emission reduction targets. Friends of the Earth lawyers will study the detail of the revised strategy and are poised to act again if it falls short of meeting legally-binding carbon budgets.

Friends of the Earth’s head of policy, Mike Childs, said:  “Ministers should be scaling up and accelerating the race to net zero, but these plans look half-baked, half-hearted and dangerously lacking ambition.

“Instead of the nationwide insulation programme urgently needed to fix our heat-leaking homes, they’ve simply re-branded an existing scheme that will only reach a fraction of the properties that need improvement.

“Yet again, onshore wind has been ignored despite being cheap, plentiful and popular with the … Read More