LCMB Newsletter

Building Performance Insights

john o'brien lcmb

Hello and welcome to September Building Performance Insights. We hope you’ve had a great summer and are back into the thick of it.

We’re proud to run a BCO workshop on the 25th September entitled “The Business Case for Productive, High Performing and Healthy Workplaces.” This event is for BCO members only but if you’re interested in a complimentary place, please scroll down.

Continuing the productivity theme, Cameron Jordan writes a short piece on why we shouldn’t blame Brexit for the UK’s continuing productivity problem.

We take a sneak peek at our upcoming 2020 UK Estates Survey where we take stock of UK Estates, and offer the chance for survey participants to benchmark their estates performance to their peers.

With climate change a mainstream issue, we look at an innovative approach organisations take to put wasted energy to good use and reduce carbon emissions.

And finally we hear what some of the LCMB team have got up to (I swam 21k in lake Windemere and Max had a new arrival), and what Mike plans to do on the 29th September.

Do get in touch to discuss how we can help you improve the performance and productivity of your people, buildings and estates.

Have a great September.

John O’Brien
Founder and MD
t: 01295 722823
e: [email protected]


BCO workshop: “The Business Case for Productive, High Performing and Healthy Workspaces”

We can now quantify how bad office environments affect people’s cognitive ability, and wellbeing, productivity and performance. And as a consequence of diminished productivity, organisation’s profit margins shrink. Yet currently only a small number of organisations systematically improve their workplace environment.

We’re proud to facilitate this breakfast workshop in London on 25th September where we summarise and reference some of the BCO’s world leading research on how the built environment affects workplace wellbeing, productivity and performance. We will then explore how organisations can build the business case to improve the performance of their built environment. Participants will:

1) debate and discuss the business case for a productive workplace

2) identify the current barriers to uptake

3) consider the way forward for the industry in overcoming some of the challenges

4) network with like-minded professionals

The event is for BCO members only however I can offer a limited number of complimentary places, so if you would like to attend, please do click the button below.

I’d like to attend the productivity in the workplace workshop

Don’t blame Brexit!

Britain’s productivity crisis – Help your organisation beat the downward trend

Every month we’re presented with a new explanation for Britain’s low productivity now dubbed as the ‘productivity puzzle’.

The Independent says we need higher wages and more holidays. The Bank of England blames Brexit for a 5% decrease in productivity three years after the referendum. But Britain has lagged behind most G7 countries since 2008 so this issue goes deeper than Brexit. The ONS chart below illustrates how the UK was the G7’s lowest performing country in 2015/16 except for Japan.

Don’t blame the state, look at what you can control
We’re a pragmatic bunch at LCMB. There’s no point in railing at things beyond our control like Brexit. And while we’re all for increasing wages and annual leave (who isn’t?), this could be an expensive (and risky) way for companies to try increase productivity.

The key to improved productivity may be right under your nose and UK organisations can make big improvements quickly and without much outlay.


Read on


2020 UK Estates Survey – sneak peek

Later this month we’re launching a survey to take the pulse of UK Estates.

In order to maintain our global position in these uncertain times, we must take stock of where we are, what to focus on, and what lessons to share amongst us.

What it covers
In the survey we’ll explore how estates control costs and risks, how estates handle energy consumption and environmental impact and how buildings help or hinder people’s wellbeing and performance. We’ll also explore how buildings can explicitly add value and contribute to organisations’ strategy. Finally we’ll look at the priorities, roadblocks and opportunities for estates now and in the future.

What you get by participating
We promise the survey will be a thought provoking exercise for all estates professionals. We will benchmark every survey participant’s responses and provide a report which highlights where you outperform your peers, and areas for improvement.

Once we’ve analysed all the responses, we’ll diagnose the condition of UK estates and feed our insights back to all participants. Our aim is to help you consider what deep changes you can make for the longer term.

Watch this space!


Record breaking temperatures – leading to innovations to control energy consumption and carbon emissions?

Yet again we faced record breaking weather this summer, no small amounts of rain, and read about raging fires in the Amazon.

Globally, August 2019 was the second warmest August on record and in the Arctic, sea ice extent was 35% lower than average, the second lowest in our 41-year record.

We must reduce our energy consumption and innovate where we can, so we’re heartened to learn about pockets of innovation, for instance how Asda uses their fridges as a virtual battery pack, and how the Humber plans the UK’s first carbon neutral industrial cluster by capturing and storing carbon emissions, to help the UK hit its carbon targets.

What you can do
We believe that every organisation is able to reduce energy and carbon emissions and save costs in the process. If you would like to investigate ways to reduce your energy consumption and carbon emissions, read how we’ve helped Birmingham Airport, and get in touch to learn more about what you can do at your organisation.



John’s 21K swim: “I will not be doing that again!”

In my previous blog, I explained the motivation for taking on my Lake Windermere swim, the personal challenge it presented and how my training was proving to be a rich metaphor for life.

A smooth start and a bumpy middle
On Sunday the 1st  September, at 7:15am, I entered the cold water of the lake at Fell Foot and put all my preparation into practice.

Each swimmer is accompanied by a kayaker, from the start, who looks after their safety and feeds them on a regular basis to make up for the energy used in swimming and keeping warm in the cold lake.

My friend Garin very kindly volunteered to support me as my kayaker… read on, or donate to MacMillan Cancer Support here.


Mike will be a distinguished gentleman (but only for a day)

This year I am taking part in The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride to raise funds and awareness for men’s health and prostate cancer on behalf of the Movember Foundation.

Prostate cancer affects more men than any other cancer, taking the lives of close to 307,000 men each year. A number surpassed by 500,000 men dying from suicide. That’s 807,000 men every year. This is a number that must change.

Please reach out to give what you can and show your support.

Please donate what you can, however little, and read more here.


Congratulations to Max, Lois and Robyn!

A warm welcome to Robyn Amelia Biddlestone who arrived on the 24th August to proud parents Lois and Max.


Last month’s most popular article

LCMB blogs cover a range of building performance and related issues.

Our most popular item in August was: England at risk of Running Dry – Our five tips to reduce water wastage.

Case Studies

LCMB's accelerated ROI audit

Too many organisations spend large sums of money on the wrong initiatives that generate a poor return or even a loss.

This is why we created the LCMB accelerated ROI audit. It cuts through the noise and quickly, clearly identifies the untapped performance improvement areas within your buildings.

The audit uncovers operational inefficiencies such as under-utilised space and facilities, as well as cost and energy reduction opportunities, and then provides a clear plan for realising potential.

By implementing the plan, we guarantee the audit pays for itself within 6 months and thereafter generates a positive return.

Contact John O’Brien on 01295 722823  [email protected] to discuss how the LCMB accelerated ROI audit can improve your organisation performance and return on investment.

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