A feather in our flat cap

It’s difficult to pin point just what makes Yorkshire so great but if I had to choose just one thing I would always come back to the people. There is a real honesty about Yorkshire folk that sets it apart from other regions throughout the country. Yorkshire is different – but in the best possible way.

Not only do you have the beautiful countryside on your doorstep but also city living. Leeds Trinity has brought a shopping experience that even I realise we were missing and further planned developments in Sheffield and Bradford will once again put the county on the map. Some people will argue that we will never compete with London but the real truth of the matter is, I don’t believe we want to. We have a fantastic offering in Yorkshire, which is large enough to deliver choice and small enough to give a friendly and personable service.

A regular comment that I hear is that people are so friendly in Yorkshire and that is something to be really proud of. Not only is it a compliment but with the knowledge that people buy people, it has become apparent that being honest, open and friendly leads to better business – who knew!

There great thing is that there is something for everyone in Yorkshire whether you love the great outdoors, enjoy shopping and leisure or are considering starting a business. The county is growing and with that comes exciting times ahead.

Take the Tour de France, who would have thought that Yorkshire would not only welcome but host the Grand Depart of the world’s most famous bike race. Obviously the impact of an event like this is huge and we can presume that it will attract inward investment and showcase the county for everything that it offers.

My hope is that people will stop seeing Yorkshire as a county that isn’t quite there yet and recognise that it is home to some of the UK’s leading brands and businesses. As a Yorkshire girl I have to add a caveat to this blog to say that I am massively biased but that doesn’t mean that the comments that I have made aren’t based on fact.

Recently Yorkshire was crowned Europe’s top tourist destination – now you can’t do much better than that. When we are going head-to-head with the likes of Rome and Paris you know that we have something worth shouting about.

There is something however that Yorkshire isn’t very good at – shouting about its success. Welcome to Yorkshire have done a fantastic job of putting the region on the global map and have without doubt raised the profile of the county in order to encourage the recognition that we deserve but smaller businesses still don’t seem to get it.

The problem is that Yorkshire people are proud and with that comes a sensitivity to sharing their news. People don’t want to shout from the roof tops, they don’t even want to talk too openly about their good news in the pub, they just prefer to get on with it.

As many of us know, this isn’t the way forward. Companies of all sizes need to share their stories and successes in order to let people know what products and services they are offering. In fairness we have seen a slight shift in attitude towards communication from many smaller brands – they understand that they need to communicate they just don’t know how to go about it.

This is where we can help. We offer a service called Open for New Business, which is a full day session that is tailored to each individual organisation. We have never conformed to the belief that one size fits all – or that hosing events for 30 people will be of any real use to them – and so that is why we created Open for New.

The idea is that we create an agenda to cover all of the topics that a business wants to focus on – this could be anything from how to write a press release, to social media strategies or brand buddying. As every business is different and has a unique personality we aim to bring this to the forefront of the session and make it a focus for communications both internally and externally.

Not only is this a great opportunity for businesses who want to address their communications needs but as a single day session there is no monthly fee or retained relationship – we simply pass everything over and get you excited by the opportunities that communicating effectively can bring you.

So come on Yorkshire, let’s start shouting. We shouldn’t be too proud to stand up and be counted for the many successes that we have to share. We are a region that is rich in heritage, has an amazing and varied culture and benefits from a very real enterprising spirit. Let’s not leave it to the Council or Tourist Board to bang the drum – let’s make sure that there is a worthy feather in our traditional flat cap!