Rural businesses are fighting to secure talented youngsters
I recently was moved to comment on an article featuring a talented small business owner who runs a small Indian cookery school in the depths of the Somerset countryside. Appearing in The Guardian newspaper, Bini Ludlow from Sweet Cumin Cookery School was pointing out how difficult it can be to recruit the right person when you are based far from the bright lights of a busy city.
I agree regarding the difficulty in recruiting young people to small rural businesses. Based in Dorset I am a director of two businesses, one in the business services sector and one which is a start up business providing beautiful handmade kitchens and cabinet making based in Somerset.
I have found it's very hard to attract the right sort of talented young person to either of these very different businesses. Yes, faster broadband would be an advantage, but also there needs to be a broader government-led initiative to keep and encourage skilled people in the rural areas with better transport and broadband, but more importantly more training and financial help for those looking to set up small businesses themselves - more career's advice in schools that centres on opportunities in the rural communities.
What will happen if we leave the EU? Will there be more opportunity created in these less populated areas to support talent? How many new graduates want to join a Somerset or Dorset PR company rather than heading for London or Bristol? Will there always be more opportunity for young talent in our cities or can the rural community offer something different and is it enough to keep those skilled people from wandering?
Added: 25th February 2016