Its seems that just as we start to get to grips with one crisis in business another one presents itself!

First we had the panic brought by Brexit and the impact on our sector from finding new suppliers, new trade routes and new staff. Then throughout Covid Engineering & Manufacturing Network worked with its members non-stop to support them with CBils, Bounceback, debentures, working procedures and so on. Each day a new challenge.

During the last year we then had escalating raw material costs and the impact of retaining and acquiring new staff, again the network brought new opportunities for business to identify staff and also train current people to support retention.

Now no sooner has the energy crisis hit then raw materials soar again due to the Ukraine crisis. These are all huge blows to businesses making them feel under incredible pressure, and yet what do we see from our great region – RESILIENCE!

Thats a huge word that means so much. Every conversation I have with our members will include concern for whatever the current situation brings by way of impact and yet our great business leaders continue to work around these issues with open dialogue in their supply chain and a general positivity that quite frankly is incredible.

Whilst we have seen significant issues brought to our members over the last few years, not one of them has been forced to pull down the roller shutter door and walk away. AMAZING!

At a meeting with the Bank of England in the fantastic refurbished The Common Room of the Great North last week we learned that employment is at a high and that trend seems to be continuing. The economy is doing very well and manufacturers are still manufacturing. Engineering & Manufacturing Network have had new B2B opportunities already this week and a fantastic initiative with the Port of Tyne to identify innovators in the digital space to help them with their future plans.

Our businesses in the network are proving that whilst those red lighting bolts seem to be driving the man to the ground, the reality is he’s pushing them back and moving forward. Keep going, keep pushing and continue to prove just how great the North East business really is.