The business leaders also mentioned government policies which they believe have helped them and other countries to grow in recent years.
James Dyson, founder of the Dyson Company said:
The government is creating conditions for long-term, export-led growth with policies like the Patent Box and R&D tax credits, which incentivise investment in engineering and technology.
Dyson’s exports-driven growth is a result of investment in research and development throughout the downturn. Britain’s most inventive companies have been doing the same. Our plans to increase the number of scientists and engineers in Malmesbury to 1,200 will help us fill our 25 year pipeline with patentable, exportable technology.
Graham Tyers, Managing Director of Newson Gale Ltd, a Nottingham firm which is growing by boosting exports, said:
We have experienced consistent export growth over the past decade, with average year on year growth approaching 20%. However this year our exports are closer to a 30% increase and we are on target to finish the year in a strong position.
There are still several countries and territories where we are only in the first stages of what we believe will develop into much larger opportunities for us so we have reason to be optimistic that our business will continue to grow.
Jennie Johnson, Chief Executive of Kids Allowed, said:
I left school at 16 and I’ve done alright for myself, so I strongly believe the apprenticeship scheme is a good way of giving teenagers the same chance to shine. When you’re that age you can really go as far as you want to – you just have to be given the opportunity.
We’ve signed up 16 new apprentices so far this year, who will all be able to gain NVQ qualifications in childcare. The great thing for us is that we get to mould our employees from the start, so they get qualifications that are fit for purpose and suit our needs.
The apprentices work slightly reduced hours so that they are able to take advantage of our in-house training academy where they learn from the best. The end result is having employees who love their job and really make a difference to children’s lives.
Too many business owners say young people don’t have the skills they need but they don’t do anything about it. Apprenticeships are a great way of overcoming those issues and providing teenagers with an aspirational job.
Generally, it’s been a challenging few years for us but we’ve continued to see the company grow, and we’re determined to provide a fantastic service.
There’s definitely a bit more of a buzz this year, and the apprentices have been part of that, so it feels like the economy’s getting better and we’re coming out the other end.