WE’RE just 21 weeks into 2020 and without doubt, this is proving to be one of the most challenging years on record.

Major issues have been thrown at us, thick and fast. From General elections, to formally exiting the EU, then flooding and Covid-19, the cumulative effect has been to severely impact the way we go about our work and personal lives. It has also undermined confidence and fundamentally affected the way we plan, or try to plan, for our uncertain futures.

For small businesses, the challenges are particularly acute. Not least because these new challenges come on top of more established ones – particularly the ever-increasing cost and regulatory burdens of doing business in the UK.

Fortunately, the vast majority of small businesses are resilient. In recent years and months they have proven themselves to be fleet-of-foot and adept at adapting to ever-changing circumstances.

We can all learn a lesson here. Because if nothing else, these increasingly and unrelentingly volatile times mean that now, more than ever, these traits are vitally important.

However, planning and foresight are equally important. Turbulent times should not be seen as a reason to simply ‘go with the flow’. Quite the opposite in fact. Because by giving proper consideration to whatever the future might hold – best and worst case scenarios – we can all put ourselves in the best possible place to deal with either.

So, as we all begin, tentatively, to move from lockdown into the ‘new normal’ we must be: even more vigilant; even more prepared to react swiftly to changing circumstances; and even more determined to see the back of this crisis.

That way, we can all play our part in restarting our lives, businesses and the economy.