OK, it’s not quite time to get out the flags and bunting, and of course Greece still isn’t having any sort of picnic, but over the last week or two, we’ve noticed some tentatively optimistic reporting, and some definite signs, albeit cautious ones, of some kind of improvement in the economic outlook. The Telegraph last week reported that the Bank of England governor Mervyn King predicts a ‘zigzag’ path to growth, “With falling inflation, and the prospect of an end to the squeeze in real incomes leading to a recovery in growth, we are moving in the right direction,” he said. And this morning I notice the Brighton Business site giving a small whoop whoop to the retail market.
The CBI – Confederation of British Industry – echoes this, with a definite nod towards signs of growth this year, however cautious and it would seem, finally, that the consensus of opinion might be that we’re kind of over the worst of this.
Don’t get me wrong, I know it’s not all plain sailing from here. I know people are losing jobs or getting paid less. I know there’s still a squeeze, but isn’t it good to hear something positive for a change? It’s not only a good thing to read about this stuff, but we’re seeing it first hand in our office. January and February, normally given over to product development and planning, have been insanely busy with increasingly larger budget events knocking on the door, and a glut of last minute jobs that we’ve actually had to quote for and turn round crazily fast, in the space of a week. Team building activities and conference enquiries, product launches and networking events… whatever is going on, we’re seeing a busy hive of activity on a daily basis, almost to the point where we can’t keep up.
Crazy huh? Anyone who tells you the last few years have been great will be growing a great big long nose as they speak. It’s been a rough ride for everyone, and to stay in business, you’ve had to work hard and be tough. So whilst it’s not quite time to break out the champagne and air horns yet, it’s definitely good to come in to work on a daily basis and at least not feel like beating your face on the desk in frustration.
So I’m off now to get a large skinny cap and start wading through the enquiries that came in on Friday – amongst other things we need to find a party venue for a group of 700 people, a site for a three day event in Europe and a Mauri to teach a corporate group how to do the Haka. All in a day’s work. Good luck to you lot out there, let us know how it’s going for you…