Many people have written about the risks of a brexit. Some have even mentioned the risks of remaining in the EU. Here is one that has had very little publicity. Yet it may be the most important one!
What will be the effects on the rest of the EU if Britain leaves?
Of course a lot would depend on what terms were negotiated for a future trade deal and other areas of cooperation between the UK and the EU, but here are a few points to consider.
- The loss of Britain’s contribution to the EU Budget.
- The loss of trade in both directions (probably less than 100% but something).
- The restriction of movement of people across the Channel: in both directions.
- The increased temptation for other countries to exit the EU.
In the light of all the above, and probably more, would the EU be weakened, economically and politically?
Now for the BIG question:
Do you think Britain would be better off if Europe was worse off?
- Would their loss be our gain?
- How would our trade be affected?
- What else would be affected?
Before you vote, THINK!
I have written before about controls that don’t control anything. Or at least, not the things they are meant to control.
I keep coming across them.
Checks that are time-and-energy-consuming that do not much reduce the risk of being circumvented or of whatever they were meant to prevent from happening.
Checks that duplicate other checks, usually where the data all comes from a common source, so if that is wrong it is all wrong. But consistent!
I recently visited a premises where the good old-fashioned signing-in book had been replaced by a computerised system. Even a slow writer like me could sign in before in a tenth of the time taken to do it on the touch-screen. Even my half-legible scrawl was nearer to my name than the on-screen version, where a character could easily be omitted or duplicated.
I was told that the main reason for the change was that the new system was to be used in the event of a fire to check who was in the building. I would have thought the best thing to rely on was the knowledge of individual managers as to who was in or out and what visitors were there.
My faith in the accuracy of computerised systems is low.
- How easily could an entry be duplicated, so they will be looking for two John Murrays, especially if one read ‘Jon Murry’.
- How easily could someone leave without logging out, especially if a group went out together and in a hurry.
- Do they have to print out all the names in the event of a fire so as to be able to check them?To err is human: to make a real mess you need a computer!
Do you need to review your risk control measures to see which ones are actually worth keeping?
Risk Management is NOT only about adding to your controls. Often it is the opposite.
So much has been said about Hillsborough that I will refrain from adding to the many comments already made. I will just point to one lesson we can all learn.
When things go wrong, what do you do?
What happened on that day was terrible. At the time it was hard to imagine any way in which it could have been worse. So I thought. I was wrong. The reaction of the Police and others in authority added insult to injury. Literally. The cover-up was worse than the event in that it kept the suffering going longer, much longer, than necessary. The failings on the day and in the lead-up to it were bad but were accidental. The cover-up was deliberate.
I have deal with many liability claims resulting from alleged negligence. In some cases the problems were exacerbated by the reactions of those responsible. In some cases, even where my clients were not negligent in causing the accident, they made things worse for themselves and others by the way they reacted to the claim or complaint.
- Denying facts which were incontrovertible.
- Blaming the victim unreasonably.
- Refusing to disclose documents which were discoverable.
- Sometimes it was just the tone of their response, whether in writing or verbal, that poured petrol onto the fire.
It couldn’t happen in your business, could it? If in any doubt, have a word with someone with experience in Public Relations or Customer Care. Perhaps with a mere claims-handler or Risk Management advisor.
Your reputation could be worth more than the cost of their fees or even the cost of the claim. Think about it!