Matt Lancashire says new productivity clubs provide an opportunity to share knowledge and boost output
Productivity is an opportunity to drive economic and business growth, supporting fair work and creating a more prosperous Scotland with increased wages, innovation and a skilled workforce, together with opportunities to export and drive inward investment. The ingredients of any successful economy.
Scotland is an innovative country with a proud heritage as a world-renowned centre of invention and ideas. From the major scientific discoveries in medicine, mathematics and geology of the 18th century Enlightenment, to the creation of the television and the first ever cloned animal in the 20th century, galvanising this spirit of innovation will help us overcome the productivity challenge we face, particularly in the SME community.
The power of knowledge and idea-sharing is critical to drive productivity. We need a bottom-up initiative to overcome this long-term problem and acknowledge that this will take time to address, requiring a different approach. And we are beginning to win that argument.
We are launching a pilot project with the Scottish Government to create two Productivity Clubs in Scotland, initially aimed at Edinburgh and Glasgow but open to any business in the country.
The clubs are free to join and, rather than being told what to do, we will be encouraging businesses to listen to the people they know best and are most likely to trust and respond to: those they know and admire within the business world itself. We want businesses to share knowledge and listen to others who are on the same path as them, before taking that back and trying it in their own business.
By identifying, sharing and implementing small changes, be that in HR, accountancy or e-commerce, SCDI and the Scottish Government believe we can have a disproportionate impact and help improve productivity and growth for Scottish SMEs.
Businesses can join the clubs for free at www.productivity.scot where they will find more information. But the Clubs will only be what you, the members, make of them and we look forward to coming with you on that journey.
Matt Lancashire is director of policy and public affairs at SCDI