One Small Step for Man, A Number of Benefits for the Economy. An Open Letter to the Prime Minister

Dear Prime Minister,

When Neil Armstrong uttered those famous words few of us really understood the scale of the achievement, the fact that it changed forever our perception of ‘the possible’.

It is a principle in business and in life generally that when you want to make major strategic or cultural changes,  it is often best to start with a ‘quick win’ and follow up with a number of small steps to maintain momentum.  The ultimate aim of course is major change.  We at Westbury often advise small businesses on just this approach.

So when we talk about the legacy of the Olympics we can recognise the quick win – the Ceremonies, the Paralympics, the whole feel-good factor.  Undoubtedly, there was/is an incredible sense of national pride, of goodwill and of community.  The problem is how do you maintain the momentum? How do you ensure that the country, its people and the economy can benefit in the medium – to long-term.  In short how do you prove ‘the legacy’?

I know you may be a little busy right now, what with the re-shuffle on top of everything else. But, here’s an idea! (I am sure you can come up with some more of your own).  Immediately after the Paralympics, announce that anyone out of work and anyone under 18 will receive a subsidy/incentive for joining their local sports or fitness club and attending regularly.  I am sure you can work out the nuts-and-bolts of such a scheme and I am sure it wouldn’t be that expensive but it would have multiple effects:-

• You can point to a direct link to the benefits arising from the Olympics;

• Those who are lacking direction in life may find it in sport;

• Maybe some of the obese or disabled will feel empowered to improve their circumstances;

• It would circulate some money in the economy;

• It ties together the Olympics, legacy and the economy.

Just one small step it may be, but, to maintain the excitement and momentum would go a long way towards leaving a substantial legacy.

Keith Graham – Managing Partner

Westbury Accountants and Business Advisors is an accountancy practice based in London. Westbury have been providing Accounting and Tax solutions to small and medium sized businesses since 1936.
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