OK so it’s done now, democracy has spoken and the UK will be exiting the EU. Marginally more than half of the UK is seeking an alternative, but we knew this didn’t we? There were signs.
My basic view of the UK political environment is that far right and far left are becoming prominent once more – centre ground is appearing to be a less attractive proposition that it used to be.
I sit in the middle by the way, just for the avoidance of doubt. I like to think i’m pretty much slap bang in the centre and balanced on most things. I’ve voted for different parties at different times in my lifetime so I like to think that I have no political bias, at least while I write this post!
The UK political scene has sought an alternative. The election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Labour party, and the fact that almost 17.5 million people have supported a campaign that Nigel Farage was instrumental in, demonstrates this to us.
We also have the fact that Donald Trump could soon be the next Leader of the Free World.
Go further back in time, there were other signs. The Arab Spring, the Coalition government, and that Nick Griffin appearance on Question Time.
The world seeks an alternative – and so we must be ready for the effect this will have on the world of work.
I read a great article this evening on HR Zone (Read Here) which ends with the line
‘It’s not business-as-usual. So please don’t pretend it is’. This is absolutely right.
The CIPD’s Peter Cheese wrote today that;-
“For most businesses, the immediate impact of this historic decision will be limited as major changes won’t be able to occur for a while” but i’m not sure I agree.
Literally exiting the EU is one thing, but the journey until that point is undoubtedly going to cause some immediate issues.
As business professionals, we must now be ready, more than ever to support our staff in the workplace.
- We must be ready for an increase in political activism which might spill into the work environment.
- We must be ready for any potential financial difficulties employees might face should there be as big an economic impact that some spectators are suggesting.
- We must be ready for an alternative talent pool due to possible changes to those who can live and work in Britain (I’m hesitant to use the term ‘UK’).
- We must be ready for it being difficult to coordinate staff who work in several countries due to potential issues with free movement of people within Europe.
- The world is going to be different, and you never know it might just be ok, possibly even better in the long run – we simply don’t know yet.
But people want an alternative in various areas of their lives – and we’d be naive to think that will stop when they step into work.
Let’s be ready. Let’s do what we do best and support people in the workplace at this very uncertain time.