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The government’s announcement that it is either scrapping or amending more than 3,000 regulations is welcome news for many businesses. Whilst some of these regulations, such as the 640 pages of cattle movement guidance, apply to only a small percentage of businesses others, such as the 380 pages of waste management rules, will affect the majority of firms.
In responding to the announcement the FSB said “Small businesses point to the burden of complying with regulation as a major barrier to growth and the work done to cut red tape will help.” But even with this help from the government, there are still many businesses, large and small, whose own internal red tape is more than a match for any governmental regulation. Businesses with a culture of mistrust, with a culture of procedure in which every action has to be documented, processed, signed, countersigned and agreed at every level.
In the current business climate in which innovation, flexibility and initiative are the watchwords; businesses which cling to ‘process and procedure in triplicate’ would do well to rethink their culture. Not only are flexible and innovative businesses more likely to have higher levels of employee engagement and outstanding customer service, they are also more able to respond quickly to changes in the marketplace; helping to secure their future in an innovation world.