There is a major debate beginning to grow louder and it asks whether we need to change the way we run business?

Last week, we wrote to over 100 senior players in our belief that we need to do more to support the development of emerging talent and how we can enable young talent to see a real opportunity. Some of the feedback has been fascinating and to share some of the thoughts:

· The UK faces the very real danger of a two-tier society split between those who are in work and those who face long term unemployment. There is a number concerned that the gap between the have and have nots will grow wider as will the gap between the wealthy and the poor.

· There have also been comments that business needs to change the way that it looks at itself and that there needs to be a genuine social conscience at the core. There has been to much focus on shareholder value and this will mean that – just as after 2008/9- the core driver will be to recoup losses rather than address some of the key issues which have arisen after the last ten years. The last decade may have been very good in building wealth but it came at a cost. So what, it has been asked, do we really stand for?

· Interestingly, this view is supported by Professor Ronnie Macdonald in Scotland who explained in an article in the Herald that: “From the 1980s, the UK shifted from being an economy with a manufacturing base to one focused on the financial sector. “In and of itself that’s no bad thing,” he says, “but the way the financial sector developed, it became about value extraction rather than creating new wealth.” In other words, profits went to those running the financial world and their shareholders, rather than to employees and society as a whole”

· A number have pointed out that businesses will be working hard to invest in the talent remaining within businesses as they will be fearful that they can not afford to lose any more intellectual capital and the battle will be on retaining employees

· The question is asked whether those who do not lose their jobs will see their salaries and wealth increase as companies seek to retain them whilst those out of work will face a battle to get back onto the ladder?

· On a more positive note, it has been noted that:

o Such periods of time are often the bedrock of great new entrepreneurs to emerge and change markets

o The millennials are coming into leadership roles and the change being sought will be led by them as they want to see greater social conscience.

What are your views and thoughts? Is this time for business to find a better balance?

Over the last five years, there have been many reports suggesting that people need to be put back on the top of the agenda.
This has been partly ignored. Now is time to put it right back on the top.