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19th Apr, 2013

Member's Corner: Taxing times with Adam Fernandes of UHY WKH
by Laura Wing on April 19, 2013 09:12


JCI Member’s Corner with Adam Fernandes

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April Fools Day is long gone, and with it came the start of a new fiscal year. Are we going to open the door with a smile when the tax man comes knocking?!

April is probably one of the busiest times for accountants. Adam Fernandes from accountancy UHY WKH Partnership highlights issues and concerns regarding taxes and making the most out of your money.

Taxing Times

What’s fair when it comes to tax?

There is much debate in the national press and the broadcast media about tax avoidance and tax evasion, and HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) is always keen to trumpet its victories against avoiders and evaders. But are the headlines we see giving a true picture of the situation and are HMRC’s wins the exception rather than the rule?

Firstly, let’s consider the difference between tax evasion, which is outside of the law, and tax avoidance, which is within an interpretation of the law. Evasion covers those deliberate acts by taxpayers to understate profits or other taxable transactions by making false returns, or omitting to make returns at all, to HMRC. Such activity is a criminal offence, although HMRC does not prosecute all offenders, taking the pragmatic approach of collecting the cash, rather than making an example of wrong-doers.

Avoidance relies on differing interpretations of the law by HMRC and taxpayers, or, more usually, their advisors. The UK’s tax law is complex and so is open to debate as to what aspects actually mean or were intended to mean when passed by Parliament. Avoidance is usually an interpretation with which HMRC does not agree.

There are tensions within the tax system caused by the position that differing types of profits and gains are taxed at different rates. Is there any sense in an employee paying more in national insurance contributions than a self-employed person, when both could be carrying out similar work? Or somebody, who acquires a house, refurbishes it, then sells it, paying a different rate of tax from a landlord, who, having let a house for a few years, makes a gain when he sells it? Each taxpayer surely has the right within the constraints of the law to plan his affairs in such a way as to minimise his tax charge. If Parliament wanted to make a level playing field, it should start by eradicating the humps and lumps caused by the tax law that it makes.

So, is it fair that HMRC should set about confusing evasion with avoidance? Sure, HMRC would like a compliant taxpayer group, all paying tax at source on a frequent basis and it would prefer that all individuals were paid via PAYE, but that’s just for ease of administration, as most of the work in that set up is carried out by employers. It’s unacceptable for the better off in society to pay tax at a lower rate than the less well off, but is it right for the well off to pay at a much higher rate than those further down the earnings scale?

The high earners have more room for manoeuvre than low earners and the ability to pay for the services of those who are able to help them manoeuvre. With the motivation to pay less tax and the means by which to achieve this, it’s no surprise that many do this, legally, without resorting to evasion. As HMRC’s hands are tied by the laws made by Parliament and all of the time it is being urged on by politicians and the press to collect more tax, there is perhaps little surprise in its tactics of tarring with the same brush all efforts to pay other than the maximum amount of tax.

If you like to continue this debate or air your views on this matter, feel free to tweet me @AdamBFernandes. Alternatively if you’d like some ideas on how you could avoid paying the maximum amount of tax e-mail me on

Adam Fernandes

Twitter: @AdamBFernandes


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4th Apr, 2013

April's Engage has landed!
by Laura Wing on April 4, 2013 09:24


The April issue of Engage is out now!

Catch up with all things JCI Cambridge - find out about our new charity of the year and how you can get involved, our latest business speaker and bring yourself up to date with our mentioring scheme. 

Click on the magainze to read Engage online or join us at one of our events in April to pick up your hard copy.

April issue of Engage

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3rd Apr, 2013

Giving difficult feedback - your verdict
by Laura Wing on April 3, 2013 16:08


JCI member James Teale gives his lowdown on our latest business speaker...

What a pleasure it was to have Colin Chrebelski, a current JCI senate and director of Development Group International for another greatly anticipated business event at JCI Cambridge.

With a wealth of knowledge and firsthand experience in the tricky field of people relationships within business, Colin was able to provide handy hints and tips on how to establish and maintain a professional rapport within the working environment through effective feedback. As a key element of performance related information exchange, feedback is a particularly delicate area within relationship management. On one hand, if done correctly it can reinforce positive behaviours and act as a means to provide constructive criticism for individuals to improve their performance. Then again, if done inappropriately it may form the basis for blame and conflict rather than for enabling specific objectives to be established for corrective action. With these broad ideals and with specific models and practical advice, JCI members and newcomers alike took part in a number of activities to bring theory to life. Throughout the session, Colin was highly engaging, clear and concise, with added wit and humour.

On behalf of JCI members and newcomers, I would like to commend JCI Cambridge’s current president James Mitchell and all others involved in organising what was a thoroughly enjoyable and informative event. 

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13th Mar, 2013

Member of the month - Kelly Tennick
by Laura Wing on March 13, 2013 17:45


Our co-community director Kelly Tennick has been making waves since she took on her JCI role.

Take a peek into her daily life here!

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Kelly is a sports massage and remedial therapist and owner of SMART Massage. She assists the council with JCI projects and recently attended the JCI UK Marketing Academy.

There is no such thing as a typical day in my job! I am a human and equine sports massage therapist and run my own business, SMART Massage. 

The three services I offer are a mobile equine sports massage service, a weekly human sports massage clinic and corporate massage service. My weekly clinic, held on a Tuesday, is a regular event in my diary. The rest of my time is spent maintaining client relationships, business development, and marketing and PR. Being flexible is key!

With a mixed background in both health and social care and horse care, my business originally started with just equine massage services. However, I quickly realised that, for my business to grow, I needed to diversify into the human massage market too. 

I really enjoy the two different sides to my business as it allows me to continue my passion of working with horses, but also provides me with the enjoyment I get from working with people. I am really proud of what I have achieved and my career highlight so far is definitely starting my own business!

I have been a member of JCI for just over a year, and my life has definitely changed for the better since joining. I have learnt skills to build my business, not just from the workshops and speakers, but from other members too.

I have built a fantastic network of friends and have been part of some brilliant projects and events including quiz nights, volunteering at Cambridge Beer Festival, travelling to Germany and Belfast and skydiving for Arthur Rank! I also recently went to Birmingham with the marketing team to learn about how to effectively communicate with our members. I also can’t wait to visit Monte Carlo for the European Conference in May!

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6th Mar, 2013

Passport to JCI - New to JCI? Not sure what it’s all about and want to know more?

Our special member education event on 30 April from 18.30 at Eversheds (Kett House, 1 Station Road, Cambridge CB1 2JY) could be just what you’re looking for!

Members and non-members are invited to an evening of drinks and networking, where you can find out all about JCI Cambridge and the five categories of activities we have to offer: Business, Community, International, Social and Training. Additionally, everyone who attends will be put into a raffle to win a bottle of champagne!The event is totally free and if you manage to collect the five stamps on your ‘Passport to JCI’, you will be put through to a prize draw to win a luxury package: dinner for two at The Cambridge Brewhouse (worth £100) and a full body massage for two with Finn Jordan Cambridge Spa & Beauty.

To find out if you’re a winner, you must attend our business seminar with The Big Issue’s John Bird on 14 May. All the money raised from this event will be donated to JCI Cambridge’s charity of the year, Mind in Cambridgeshire.

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Places are limited, so please make sure you register early at

Free parking, food and drink!

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21st Feb, 2013

Pub Club is back!
by Laura Wing on February 21, 2013 15:23


Following the huge success of JCI Cambridge Pub Clubs in 2012, our first club night of 2013 is being held on Tuesday 12 March at another of Cambridge’s hidden gems - The Geldart.

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Situated on the corner of Ainsworth and Sleaford Street, The Geldart offers an eclectic range of real English ales, continental lagers and more whiskies than you can shake a stick at. For those coming straight from work and in need of sustenance, The Geldart is renowned for its ‘hot rocks’ and offers a selection of speciality meats, including alligator and bison! There are plenty of vegetarian options too, as well as a range of mouth watering desserts.

JCI Pub Club events provide members with the chance to network in a less formal atmosphere than our monthly business training events. The aim of the Pub Club is to promote real ales and English ciders (NOT cidre!) and to support the niche local community pubs that are the real hidden gems of Cambridge. Both members new and old attend the events to renew and develop friendships, as well as to talk the night away over a fine beverage or two.

Join us on 12 March from 18.30 at The Geldart, 1 Ainsworth Street, Cambridge CB1 2PF. If you have any questions about the night, please email



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18th Feb, 2013

JCI Cambridge graduates from JCI UK's Marketing Academy!
by Laura Wing on February 18, 2013 22:06


Over the weekend of  9 and 10 February, the JCI Cambridge marketing team attended the JCI UK Marketing Academy in Birmingham. The 4.30am start and service station with no vegetarian option were the only lowlights of what was otherwise a fantastic learning experience for the team. They share exactly what it was that stood out for them...

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Kelly Tennick

The thing that stood out for me the most over the marketing weekend was the importance of continuity within branding and how important it is to create a solid, seamless image for your business or organisation. I realised that branding is about more than just a logo and a few pretty colours! It provides an insight to who you are and defines your organisation, allowing you to stand out and create awareness in a way that supports the core values of the company.

With regards to social media, I began to see that it is much more than just a platform for ‘blank advertising’ and that it should be about socialising with your audience and getting them engaged with your brand rather than just constantly trying to sell things to them blindly. I understood the importance of continuing solid branding through to social media to provide a professional ‘face’ when communicating to existing and potential customers.

Finally, I learned that measuring your success is so important. In order to be able to streamline, adapt and grow your business or organisation and your brand, you need to know if what you are doing is working or not. Once you know this, you can scrap what is unsuccessful, put more energy to what works well and adapt weak areas to get better results in the future.

Naily Mak

I’ve just graduated from JCI Marketing Academy class of 2013. The training session was interactive and the trainers were “ace” and very energetic. Most activities were based on real challenges faced in our chambers. It gave us the chance to use the principles learnt to address them. We also had the pleasure to meet Anna Gril, JCI Europe vice-president, who gave a brief history of JCI origins.

The training session covered branding, social media, multimedia and more. It was interesting to hear about how to devise strategies to leverage the power of social media in order to raise the profile of an individual or an organisation. When commenting on the increasing usefulness of video content, Philip Cavalier-Lumley couldn’t have put it any better: “It’s just like garlic bread, it’s the next thing.” The session highlighted what we should be aware of when creating a promotional video that not only fits its purpose, but also adheres to JCI guidelines.

Other interesting tips included taking picture in a landscape format, and ensuring that they are at least one megabyte in size.

This weekend has been a success. I came back feeling positive and more confident about tackling my new role in JCI.

Laura Wing

The JCI UK Marketing Academy provided an excellent opportunity to share best practice and ideas with other JCI marketing directors from all over the country. Different techniques yield different results depending on your chamber, your members and of course, your marketing directors!

I was really impressed with the attitude of the group and its members; everyone was willing to get stuck in and help each other learn. It was particularly exciting that the whole JCI Cambridge marketing team was in attendance. We will now be able to draw on the knowledge gained from the weekend to form the basis of our plans over the next 12 months. 

There are some areas of marketing I am more confident with. For example, I know little about video, but was excited to see Naily getting involved and showing a interest in how we could make this work in our own chamber. Having experience in PR in my day job, it was great to be able to bolster what our trainers were telling us about the subject. It felt good to share the knowledge! 

JCI Cambridge cannot thank JCI UK and its trainers enough for the weekend. We learnt so much and came back to Cambridge ready to tackle our marketing challenges!

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4th Feb, 2013

JCI Cambridge kicks off the year in style with our ‘big weekend’!
by James Mitchell on February 4, 2013 13:00


Over the weekend of 26 and 27 January, JCI Cambridge welcomed members from across the country to the elegant Jesus College for what was aptly named ‘The Big Weekend’! Compromising of Inspiration Day, JCI Cambridge’s first Annual Gala Dinner, and Business Skills Day, the pressure was on to deliver an amazing event.

Events » Business events » Big Weekend 2013 » 216180_603930132957131_1185122047_n.jpgAs the first national event held by JCI Cambridge since it reformed just three years ago, we needed to show the rest of the UK we are a professional chamber capable of showing our guests a good time. An amazing effort was made by the JCI Cambridge council. Lead by immediate past president Patrick McCrae and unstoppable 2013 president James Mitchell, ‘The Big Weekend’ proved to be a huge success.

Inspiration Day is the first national event of each JCI year and is designed to get members informed, enthused and inspired about plans and goals for the year ahead. Delegates were able to catch up with the national board, attend talks from fantastic keynote speakers, see old friends and meet new members. The day started with introductions from members of the national board about their plans and projects for the year ahead. Headed by 2013 president Emma Eastwood, the morning brought everyone up to speed about the opportunities available in the coming year. We also saw the handing over of a cheque to ‘Save The Children’ raised by members who took part in the £1 a day food challenge at the beginning of the year.

Events » Business events » Big Weekend 2013 » 314829_603931669623644_368941346_n.jpgAfter a short break, we were treated to the first talk of the day from keynote speaker Patrick Knight. Presenting ‘Kick start your chamber’, Patrick delighted and inspired us with his tried and tested techniques to engage and activate current members, spread the word of JCI positively to the wider community and appeal to new members. Patrick was able to relate to the issues chambers face when trying to promote, engage and grow their membership and profile, and provided useful, targeted actions that every chamber could apply.

Events » Business events » Big Weekend 2013 » 391247_603933136290164_1700741685_n.jpgFollowing lunch, JCI Cambridge organised a treasure hunt to provide attendees with an opportunity to explore Cambridge. Delegates explored the city in teams, following a map and searched for answers to mini riddles, whilst looking for an opportune moment to take a winning JCI-themed photo. The hunt provided everyone with a light-hearted break, exercise and fresh air.



Events » Business events » Big Weekend 2013 » 521686_603932366290241_462054159_n.jpgPatrick Knight once again took to the stage, this time to tell us about his personal journey. Having worked hard to find career success and establish himself as an international speaker, Patrick thought his life could not get any better. Finding out his wife was pregnant with their first child was the icing on the cake. However, this happiness was quickly dashed when Patrick and his family were the victims of the famous ‘Thanksgiving Day massacre’ resulting in Patrick being shot. He was in a coma for three months before having to learn to move his whole body and speak again - without his wife and unborn child, who were devastatingly murdered on that fatal day.

Such a devastating, personal and inspiring story meant there was not a dry eye in the house. Patrick shared his story beautifully, really hitting home to everybody that you never know what is around the corner. The cornerstone of the story for most people was when Patrick described that sometimes you can never forget, or move on from an incident such as this, but you can decide how you carry the experience with you. He explained that he carries his experience and memories of the event as a ‘medal’ on his chest, as a proud, poignant reminder of what happened, and what he has achieved since of the experience. 

Events » Business events » Big Weekend 2013 » 533845_603932799623531_17422363_n.jpgA short round up of the day followed before Inspiration Day was officially closed and delegates retired to their hotels to prepare for the Gala Dinner. Returning to Jesus College for 7pm, delegates were treated to a delightful drinks reception where we saw the second cheque of the day being handed to our charity of 2012, Arthur Rank Hospice. A total of £2400 was raised throughout 2012 in a myriad of different ways meaning we, exceeded our £2012 target.


Events » Business events » Big Weekend 2013 » 25932_603936292956515_965253099_n.jpgAttendees then enjoyed a three course meal during which several ‘taking of wine’ toasts took place to raise money for charity. After several speeches, the ‘handing over’ of the presidents chain took place as Patrick McCrae handed over the reins to James Mitchell for 2013. Copious amounts of wine, gorgeous food and an exquisite venue ensured everybody had a superb evening. For those that could keep going, an exciting after party was booked at Cambridge’s best club, Lola Lo’s. Needless to say, people were still partying at 3am!


Business Skills Day kicked off on Sunday with a few short networking tasks, and a choice of two speakers. Garin Rouch presented ‘Building better business relationships’ covering topics such as the six principles of influence and how to apply these skills to be a better leader, as well as looking at our own ‘influence maps’.

Marcus Orlovsky offered delegates the opportunity to ask advice on any topics they felt useful, as well as discussing his career background and how he notices opportunities for business.

James Mitchell brought the weekend to a close ensuring everyone left feeling inspired, enthused and invigorated for the year ahead. An amazing event from JCI Cambridge to start 2013 - here’s to the year ahead and to next year’s Gala Dinner!

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1st Feb, 2013

JCI Cambridge welcomes young award winning entrepreneur
by James Mitchell on February 1, 2013 16:25


Passionate businessman Jamie Dunn will be the first guest speaker of 2013 at JCI’s monthly business seminars on Tuesday 12 February.

Although only 20 years old, Jamie Dunn has achieved a huge amount in his short career. He joins the Cambridge chapter to talk about mentoring - a topic that is close to the chamber’s heart.

Jamie will be sharing his personal career journey that saw him start his first business at the tender age of 12. He applied to Dragon’s Den star Peter Jones’ National Enterprise Academy where he was chosen from thousands to be mentored by Peter and his team. He gained invaluable knowledge from the top business people in the UK and decided to share his experience with others upon graduating.

Jamie set up a course to help teenagers get into business and has helped over 800 people enhance their grades and career prospects.

Having expanded his business across 16 countries and been recognised as one of the Top Young Entrepreneurs in the World, Jamie will share his top tips on how to get the best from mentoring, both as a mentor and as a mentee.

Join Jamie on 12 February from 18.30 at Eversheds, 1 Station Road, Cambridge CB1 2JY. Visit to register your place.

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13th Dec, 2012

Inspiration Day - Gala Dinner & Business Skills Day 2013!
by James Mitchell on December 13, 2012 18:41


People of JCI UK, Cambridge's time to host a truly wonderful weekend has arrived! We are honoured to be hosting a not to be missed weekend of what promises to be two days packed with networking, team building and first-class training.

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Saturday 26 January - Inspiration Day & Gala Dinner

New year, new JCI! This day will place focus on setting the scene for the next phase of JCI development. The theme for the JCI of 2013 is 'Inspiring action' and focuses on being bold and continuing to push for success at all times to ensure JCI and its members go from strength to strength.

A brand new JCI UK board will be introduced to members and the day will provide an opportunity to collaborate with people from across the UK as we enter the new year. The day will also involve plenty of team Gala Dinner, Jesus Collegebuilding activities to consolidate networks as well as wildly anticipated speaker Patrick Knight. Patrick's inspirational tale of how he made a full recovery after he was put in a three-month coma after being shot is not to be missed.

The day will finish with a sumptuous three-course meal in the opulent main dining hall at Jesus College; the perfect way to unwind after an inspiring day.


Sunday 27 January - Business Skills Day

Join like-minded, high-calibre and innovative professionals, managers and entrepreneurs for a day of education and inspiration. Choose from a range of carefully selected workshops that aim to hone and develop skills as well as inspire and educate. Over 120 young professionals are expected from Cambridge and across the UK so you're guaranteed an unparallelled mix of quality and fun throughout the day.


Speaker Profiles

Patrick KnightBlessed to survive - Inspirational stories

Patrick Knight - Saturday & Sunday

We are privileged to present Patrick Knight as our keynote speaker for the weekend. Patrick is jetting in from Miami to be with us and his inspirational tale of how he overcame adversity is not to be missed.

Patrick's amazing story of survival and recovery after he was shot by his brother-in-law is truly remarkable. It was Thanksgiving 2009 when his former family member turned up to dinner armed and shot four members of his family including his wife and her twin sister. Patrick was shot in the stomach and was in a coma for three months. When he woke, he had to relearn how to do everything from talking to writing. 

Now, three years on, Patrick shares his story of recovery and how he found peace in his new reality. Speaking on both days of the event, Patrick will be facilitating workshops as well as leading break out sessions.


Building effective business relationshipsGarin Roach - Building Effective Relationships, Business Skills Day

Garin Roach - Sunday

Garin is a regular JCI speaker who always pulls in the crowds with an entertaining delivery of his subject. This is guaranteed to be a highly interactive and challenging workshop designed to get members identifying, learning and applying the essential ingredients for successful long-term business relationships. Garin will advise members on lowering the costs of business, speeding up results and increasing profits to expand influence.


Marcus Olovsky, Are you a Participator or an Observer, Business Skills DayAre you a participator or an observer, a doer or a sayer?

Marcus Orlovsky - Sunday

This thought-provoking and entertaining workshop will focus on identifying if delegates are observers or participators or "I could have done that" people or "I have already done that" people. Renowned for his ability to start or close any conference on a high, participants will be stimulated by ideas and discussion and are sure to be talking about his workshop weeks after the event.


Jon Lockhurst, Overcoming challenges, Business Skills Day

Overcoming challenges in today's working environment - getting out what you
put in

Jon Luckhurst - Sunday

The business environment we work in today demands strong leadership and streamlined ways of working. Jon Luckhurst looks at how to create energised and engaged staff that can manage teams and provide fresh and innovative ideas to overcome obstacles in the workplace. Jon has worked with global brands such as HSBC and eBay, so his workshop simply must not be missed.


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Weekend Sponsor - UHY-WKH Accountant

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