Unless you live under a rock you will be aware that the UK has been invaded over the last week. We arent talking terrorists, we arent talking swine flu. It appears that we have been invaded by some white stuff called snow.
The country is grinding to a halt with thousands of schools closed and many people deciding to stay at home rather than risk life and limb getting into the office. Delays and closures are also affecting airports, trains and the roads. The temperature in the UK in some parts has dropped as low as -21.2c (-6.2F). This is as cold as the South Pole. Apparently this is the worst big freeze in the UK since 1981. Looks like global warming is starting to kick in after all.
And now there is panic in the government as grit supplies are running low with only one more week of supplies. Would of been more sensible if they had stockpiled some for the colder months. No that would be far too sensible!
I think now is the time for UK companies to embrace new technology that allows employees to work from home. In most cases an office worker can achieve just as much while out of the office as they can while they are in the office. Most larger companies adapt VPN allowing users to access all their applications remotely such as email, intranet, messaging, and remote network drives. Face to face contact isnt as common in todays workplace anyway with teleconferences being held using webtools such as webex.
Of course the working from home policy is difficult to apply to workers in retail unfortunately!
One positive aspect of the cold snap is that its driving people to start shopping locally rather than driving out of town to superstores. So good news for small local retailers (thats if they can get into work!).
As Im writing this article its still snowing outside. Will this weather ever stop? I think Im going to get on some warm clothes and head out to stock up on some supplies shortly.
Im going to leave you with a picture below from NASA that shows just how the UK has been affected by the cold snap.
Great Britain, as seen on Jan. 7, 2010 by the Terra Satellite. Credit: NASA