I recently attending a free public lecture hosted by Reading University on the importance of companies having a social purpose.
Professor Emma Borg reflected on how ethical business behaviour can result in happier, healthier and more productive employees, greater loyalty from customers and suppliers and ultimately boost a company's bottom line and this naturally made me reflect on what we do here at Stanton House.
As a member of our CSR committee, I think about our social purpose regularly. This year, our big fundraising event sent 11 of us jumping out of a plane and facing our fears with a sky dive and we raised almost £5,000. Of course, this allows the business to give to a charity we really care about, EducAid. It provides a great talking point with similarly aligned businesses and of course, allowed for some great pictures for a press-release! But, most importantly, at the very core of it enabled us as 11 individuals to come together and face our fears as one.
The day had an incredibly long run up, with high fundraising targets and only four months to get there. The day itself involved travelling to a remote corner of Wiltshire, arriving from Bristol, Reading, London, Guildford and even Edinburgh. We brought our friends and families, our nerves and some bubbly for after. Unusually for a group of recruiters, we were all very quiet after the safety talks at the prospect of hurtling towards the ground at deadly speeds. There were some tears and lots of motivational hugs, words of encouragement and entertainment from little Rufus, our youngest supporter at just 18 months old.
After the jump, we were elated. There is nothing quite like falling through the sky with your colleagues, knowing that you’ve made a big impact to a charity you all care about and knowing that you’ve supported each other through a pretty weird situation. We all came back to work on Monday feeling like a team and knowing we work for an organisation that makes a positive impact in the world.
With the year almost over, a few bake-offs, a skills auction and a Christmas jumper day left to go, we will most likely raise over £12,000. Our social impact can be clearly measured but let’s not forget about the impact companies can have on individual employees when they encourage them to go out of their comfort zone.