Pride, health and innovation

Written by Mike Baldock

24 | 05 | 21

3 minute read


A sudden rush of pride hit me today. Some of you may have already experienced this sensation at some point for similar reasons. In the face of potential crisis and the adversity of recent times, lockdowns and Brexit anxiety, the overwhelming evidence of our collective extra effort, adaptability, ingenuity and increased unity as families, business teams, industries and nations, hit me in a single ‘eureka’ moment.

I thought about my colleagues within FHL and RSM UK. How brilliantly we’ve all adapted to new ways of working and the extra mile we have been prepared to go to support each other and our clients. I was also struck by how we as individuals, families, households, ‘bubbles’ and communities have risen to the challenges. Beyond this I considered our national and global response, to the efforts of our international scientific and medical communities. I am in awe of the enormity of all that we’ve faced and are facing still; how much we’ve adapted and all we’ve achieved and continue to strive for.

Perhaps today’s ‘Friday feeling’ is intermingled with the effect of Spring, bringing with it more intense colours and a greater sense of renewed hope than I recall from previous years, thanks in part to the promise of continually easing restrictions as the vaccine rollout accelerates. Reflecting on the positives certainly comes more naturally under these circumstances.

Personal and business health

I asked myself a brutal question today. Compared with pre-COVID has your health and fitness:

  1. Improved?
  2. Stayed the same?
  3. Worsened?

A few weeks ago I put myself in group 3 mostly because of an almost 50% reduction in time committed to fitness. I estimated then that most people would probably also be in group 3 due to less time in the gym or swimming pool, lockdown conditions and not to mention ‘dry January’ going out the window for many of us.

Back then I also considered the question from a business-health perspective. Has ‘business health’…

  1. Increased?
  2. Stayed the same?
  3. Reduced ?

Businesses have been hurt by the economic slowdown. I concluded then that most businesses would also be group 3. But are they? I’ll come back to that.

With today’s sudden feeling of renewed hope and pride, I’ve now decided that I personally identify with group 2 and I am valiantly pushing for a group 1 position! Why? I should have considered other factors that I hadn't realised at the time:

  • More walking (locally), more ‘play’ time – and generally feeling more connected to the immediate environment (home, family, surrounding area, natural environment etc).
  • More housework, more gardening and home improvement. Being active in different ways – and learning new skills.
  • Most of us waste less time sitting in the car, in traffic, in meeting rooms, in the staff canteen.
  • More homemade food, more education about health and our impact on the environment, and more time for reflection in general.
  • Hosting or attending online events and online workouts - with colleagues, friends, and family.
  • Fundraising initiatives (I did the 25 push-ups in 25 days challenge to raise awareness and money for mental health.)
  • More improvements to the way we work, our home-work balance. Helping businesses to improve and helping our teams to develop.



I look around me at my (virtual) workplace and my team, and I see innovation, adaptation, ingenuity, personal development, stewardship, flexibility, and agility. These all combine to create greater unity. The overwhelming evidence here is that we (and our clients) are implementing new and improved systems. We have focussed hard on improving processes, finding new opportunities, becoming more effective as individuals, leaders, co-workers and teams.

So now, I realise the answer for most businesses is not group 3. I’m surrounded by innovative clients and colleagues, who are in many respects all the healthier thanks to their versatility.

An unprecedented number of businesses approached FHL/RSM during lockdown to start their journey to the ‘cloud’. Many from unexpected places, particularly from industries associated with more traditional ways of working. Surely this is the end of the Early Adopter stage of the Innovation Adoption curve. Has COVID stimulated a stampede by the early majority, and perhaps by many of the would-be late majority too?

In a world where change is the only constant, the secret is finally out - the 'cloud' is the way forward. RSM and NetSuite can help you transform your business and deliver the three business benefits that really matter:

  1. Visibility
  2. Agility and Mobility
  3. Futureproofing

The last year has not been an easy time for most people and businesses. And whilst there may be more ‘casualties’ post-furlough, there will also be many more success stories. Innovation, diversification, stewardship and teamwork, will see us bounce back, more physically, mentally, technologically and professionally prepared than ever before.


If you want to find out how RSM can help you transform, adapt and innovate your business, then speak with one of our fantastic team members.