I read today that the number of people furloughed right now in the UK is estimated at in excess of 9m, which apparently is 25% of the working population.
Read those numbers again. They are staggering, and frightening.
They mean there will be about 5m immaculately decorated houses, inside and out, with beautifully manicured gardens. More worryingly though, the number I've read is £90bn unplanned and unbudgeted public sector borrowing.
Now, I know some clients like to spend money they don't have, but even the most notorious (you know who you are !) would struggle to overspend at that rate...
Then factor in the point that most businesses are going to have massive inefficiency forced on them through social distancing. We've all seen the supermarket policies, I hear tales about driving instructors being warned about only being able to teach two people a day with deep cleans between lessons, dentists who can see 4 - 5 people a day. The restaurants that are planning to have to reduce covers by 40 - 50%. Add to that the costs of all the PPE.
I'm not an economist, But it seems to me that all this is pointing to high inflation ahead.
If the number of customers decline, and the costs stay pretty much the same, the price per customer has to go up for the business to cover those costs. After all, if it can't pay its way then there is no point opening. And if the costs go up, that only adds to the problem
The benefit of course, if inflation goes up, the debt effectively goes down. I'm sure that this theory will be ridiculed by those that really do know something about economics, but it makes you think...and given that as business owners who have some degree of control about price setting, we need to keep a watch on this.
What are my positives today:-:
1. It's official
It has pointed out by more than several people that following last night's story about Harry's driving licence, it is now out there in the open that these blogs are full of bull. The first person to point this out was my wife, Thanks Debbie.
2. I'm £20 richer
I wore a suit today, it hadn't been worn for a while. Put my hand in my pocket and found a £20 note.
I mentioned this to someone, they suggested that given what I do, I ought to be better organised and have an accounting system for this kind of thing. So I've set up a Quickbooks account, with a separate nominal ledger account for each pocket in each suit, and a provision for holes leading to losses of coins.
3. Quickbooks has introduced a 30 day cashflow forecast
I know many readers are Quickbooks Online users. You might have spotted a new feature in the left hand menu bar - a 30 day cashflow forecast.
This is linked to bank feeds (assuming they are turned on) and has quite a sophisticated AI algorhythm underpinning it. With short term cashflow becoming ever more important I see this as a really useful feature.
What have I been talking to clients about today ?
Controlling Multiple Communication Feeds -I'd be interested in knowing how you each deal with this. In the very old days the only channels of communications were letters (remember those), meetings and telephone conversations. If you needed to keep an audit trail of correspondence, it was easy, a file of copy letters was all you needed.
But now we're inundated with sources - for me the above all exist (telexes and faxes have come and gone), but add to it What's App, Text, Email, Zoom, Slack, Microsoft Teams, Facebook Messaging, and so the list goes on.
From personal experience, I know that the most trivial message can be unexpectedly important in the future, but how do we keep these safely archived in some sort of easily retrievable format? Without spending hours printing or saving screenshots. I'd love your input
Until tomorrow, stay safe, stay positive
Please - if you do read this far and feel inspired to forward it to anyone and everyone, please do so.
For those that have been struggling with the concept of what a 'suit' is above, here is a clue. It's what people used to wear in offices. Offices, incidentally were buildings that people went to discuss the previous night's East Enders and who should be voted off Strictly next week