Stay true to your core values

By Ben Brocklesby, director at Origin.

For my final column of the year, I want to reflect on 2019, before looking ahead to 2020 and the opportunities it brings.

Last year, I spoke about Brexit and the potential implications it might have on UK businesses, and more specifically, manufacturers within the fenestration industry. Unbelievably, one year on, we are perhaps surrounded by even more uncertainty, with Brexit still looming over us and now not knowing which political party will form our next government.

Times are indeed troubling, but with every challenge comes an opportunity. Moving into 2020, people shouldn’t panic. It is much easier said than done, but there is no value in fretting. This uncertainty is also putting pressure on the competition, so make sure you are better prepared than they are. There will be plenty of opportunities coming your way, you just need to be able to react to them appropriately and effectively.

We have kept this as our mantra, and it has served us well in 2019. In fact, we have grown the business despite the indifferent marketplace. Origin has launched four new products to market – two new sliding doors, a slimline window and our slimmest ever bifold option – which is more than we have ever done before.

During 2019, we also launched our first ever primetime television advert, which was a big statement of intent from us. In addition to supporting our ambitious business growth plans, the campaign benefited our partners by driving up demand; increasing sales and profit-making opportunities in the process.

These achievements have set us in good stead for 2020, where we foresee even more attention being placed on a business’s ‘green credentials’. The sustainability debate shouldn’t be underplayed and we, as always, will continue to improve in all areas, to do our bit to help combat climate change.

Any decision makers not sure of where to start should use accreditations to identify the most efficient and sustainable practices. In 2019, we achieved ISO 14001, for meeting high environmental standards and continuously minimising our impact on the environment. With consumers becoming increasingly interested in a company’s sustainability credentials before making a purchasing decision, the more proactive companies out there will do all they can to capitalise on this new market share in 2020.

I am incredibly excited about what the future holds, not just for Origin, but for all UK businesses. A settled political landscape might be just what the country needs to kick start the new year in a positive and proactive manner. Remember, no matter what is thrown at you, stay true to the business’s core values and you will have a year to remember.