Half of UK managers expect economic effect of Brexit will be negative

Half of managers in the United Kingdom believe the economic effect of Brexit will be negative in the medium term. However, more than half remain positive about prospects for their own businesses.

These are some of the findings of the Future Forecast for 2017 from the Chartered Management Institute (CMI).

economic effect of BrexitHalf of UK managers believe the economic effect of Brexit will be negative over the next 3-5 years. Image: pixabay composite

The survey of 1,180 UK managers reveals a mixed outlook, reflecting various aspects of uncertainty.

For instance, two-thirds (65 percent) of UK managers expect economic conditions to worsen over the next 12-18 months.

And when asked specifically about the economic effect of Brexit – the referendum vote to leave the European Union – about half (49 percent) said they think it will damage economic growth over the next 3-5 years.

However, when asked about prospects for their own organizations in the year ahead, 57 percent of UK managers said they see them as positive.

CMI chief Ann Francke says:

“Although it’s clear that there are significant challenges posed by the UK’s decision to Brexit, as a country we need to move forward and harness pragmatic positivity. UK business will play a vital role in making this a success.”

The survey of UK managers also found:

– only 39 percent (the lowest figure since 2012) described their businesses as having experienced growth during 2016
– 35 percent lack confidence in the ability of leadership and management to make the most of opportunities following Brexit
– 74 percent believe investing in skills is more important than ever in the post-referendum era
– however, 20 percent said they did not receive the training and development they needed to do a good job in 2016

Two in five UK managers believe Trump presidency will be bad for UK economy

Over and above the economic effect of Brexit, the survey also sought UK managers’ views on what effect the Trump presidency might have.

The findings show 40 percent of UK managers believe having Donald Trump in the White House will damage the UK economy, compared with 31 percent who believe the effect will be positive.

The remaining 29 percent said they were either not sure what effect the Trump presidency might have on the UK economy, or they thought the impact would be negligible.

“In 2017 we have an opportunity to stand together and tackle longstanding issues like the productivity gap, currently 21 percent lower than other G7 countries,” says Francke, noting the importance of investing in apprenticeships and management skills.

“There are uncertain times ahead, but I agree with many of those surveyed that there are opportunities for forward-thinking UK businesses,” she adds.

The CMI have published an infographic summing up the survey results.