The Adam Smith Institute has set June 2nd as UK Tax Freedom Day. This means we spend more than 5 months each year working for the government. How do we spend what’s left? Our gasoline is currently £1.23 per litre (that’s $9.15 a US gallon). If you avoid the car then our train prices are the highest in Europe. The cost of living is surging with increases coming in daily across the board. Set this against a falling housing market and a credit squeeze and people are stopping or delaying spending.

Accordingly business confidence has dropped dramatically. Unless you are in a hot, experiential market, e.g. iPhone, Indiana Jones or Wii, adapting to this challenging environment of lower growth, rising prices & chasing revenue will mean an even greater focus on cash flow and controlling costs.

With high capital expenditure projects such as new IT systems unlikely to get sign-off, does this offer a great opportunity to really focus on customers, processes and removing the hidden waste? To do so immediately and relatively cheaply? To start banking benefits within weeks? To build into a full business transformation?

As price starts to rank as the top criteria for buying decisions, so businesses will need to ensure they can reduce costs and maintain quality. Now must be the time to be ramping-up & investing in the Lean Six Sigma technology.

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