It goes without saying that 2019 looks to be a year full of uncertainties. You only need to mention the ‘B-word’ and you are met with a host of different views and opinions on what the UK’s EU departure could mean for the mobility trade. But uncertainty should by no means curb your growth ambitions.
I think it can be tempting for businesses to meet doubt by battening down the hatches, reverting to familiarity and shying away from risks. A number of retailers have told me in recent weeks that ‘Brexit scare mongering’ in the mainstream media and pessimism about the UK high street is getting them down. It is hardly surprising then that some businesses have a grey outlook for 2019.
It is important to remember, however, that the fate of individual mobility retailers on the high street is not out of their hands. Conditions may be tough but that does not mean growth plans should be shelved until the climate improves. In fact, it calls for the complete opposite. Equipment distributors need to drive harder than ever for the strategies they believe will deliver expansion for their companies.
Harrogate-dealer, Yorkshire Care Equipment, is a great example of what can be achieved if firms innovate when the going gets tough. It recently revealed it has increased profitability seven-fold and it remains on track to treble in size by 2020. While some of its competitors and suppliers have gone to the wall its bosses remain focused on establishing own-brand products and entering new markets to cement itself as a broad and reliable provider.
There are a host of other equipment retailers in the market who have stuck to their guns and approached the sector’s challenges intelligently and strategically. These are the businesses who have little to fear in the 12 months ahead.
No one really knows what the future holds so there is little use in worrying and it might instead be best to focus on preparing for the unexpected but inevitable curve balls. Besides, a few nerves mean you really care about your business and probably means you’re ready to do whatever it takes to thrive come what may.