All posts by Michael Bullard

Simple Brexit Solution

The dismal progress of our negotiations to leave the EU is most disheartening.

It is clear that the Prime Minister will be most unlikely to arrive at a proposal that suits both the Leavers and Remainers, and then the EU negotiators.  The behaviour of some of our MPs, who have been elected to represent the people, is little short of disgraceful.  References to “the will of the people” are ridiculous, as this only refers to 52% of the electorate who voted.  Or maybe “the will of the people” is the other 48%?  Who knows?

Brexit is the most important issue facing the country since the Second World War and the outcome of these negotiations will affect us all for many years to come.  If we continue in the same fractious, factional way, the outcome will be disastrous.  With no clear majority in the House of Commons, the Prime Minister has no room for manoeuvre if she continues to act on party lines.

So she must show a bit of imagination and a lot of courage – she needs to form a cross party group to devise a suitable Brexit policy that will be acceptable to most people. Continue reading Simple Brexit Solution

Succession Planning in Family Businesses

What is a family business?

A family business may be defined as one which is owned and managed by the same family through successive generations. Family businesses range in size from very large (UK examples include Associated British Foods, JCB and Arnold Clark Automobiles) to very small, with a modest sales revenue and perhaps just one or two employees.

Nearly one in two UK businesses are owned and run by families and they make a significant contribution to our economy – you are in good company!

The ideas below are mainly directed at smaller concerns and are based on discussions with owner managers as well as my own experiences working in a family business.

Continue reading Succession Planning in Family Businesses


The thief of time… and the thief of morale?

Procrastination is the thief of time. For whatever the reason, the procrastination of others is very frustrating to work with.

ProcrastinationIt’s a bit like driving behind a slow vehicle on a twisting road when you’re in a hurry. You really want to overtake but the conditions won’t allow it, so you sit there getting more frustrated until in the end you can’t stand it any longer and go for it. Continue reading Procrastination


Update: 24th June 2016
Perhaps the Brexit result is a clear reminder that all elected politicians must act in the best interests of their constituencies, not just for themselves and their cronies.
This is surely the root of the dissatisfaction with the EU felt right across Europe – people no longer think governments or the EU are interested in their problems.

The first casualty of war is the truth…

European Union Flag

…as the old saying goes. And that’s what I am thinking, as I try to reach a dispassionate, logical answer to the question: should we stay in the EU or should we leave?

There is an awful lot of emotion on both sides.  But how much informed debate is there?  Each day, another group lists a series of compelling “facts” about whether we should leave or stay.  It seems that most people have formed an opinion and are then finding or fitting facts to support that opinion. Continue reading Brexit

50 Years of the Luckins Database

An Information Revolution

Luckins EPRIn April 1966 the Luckins Electrical Price Reporter for wholesalers and contractors was first published. I’ll skip the usual stuff about Twiggy and Revolver and the 60s and tell you the significance of the Luckins.

In the age of Google, we think nothing of searching numerous web sites for product information. Some, like Amazon, gather it all together for us. Now it really is quite easy to find out about nearly anything. I am currently looking for a new phone – with the aid of Carphone Warehouse, O2, Tech Radar and Pocket Lint, I will be well informed about prices and specs before I even go in the shop!

Back in the 60s, life was very different, with electrical wholesalers and contractors relying on manufacturers’ printed catalogues and price lists. Understandably, if just a few items changed in price, you were unlikely to hear about it. In an era of inconsistent inflation, it was Continue reading 50 Years of the Luckins Database

Colour Schemes for Web Sites

We have started 2016 with two interesting new projects: The first is a complete update of a group of web sites for one of our earliest customers – it’s nice when they keep coming back, we must be doing something right. The second is a more complex CRM system, targeted at a particular industry sector. This was an introduction from an existing customer, which was nice too. More about this in due course.

Getting the colours right

With any web design, it’s vital to get your colour scheme right from the start and these projects are no exception. There are some great colour scheme web sites, such as Paletton and Adobe’s Kuler Wheel, but sometimes you just want a simple approach. Continue reading Colour Schemes for Web Sites