Yet, like many business people, I have a view that commercial organisations can’t exist in isolation from the rest of society – we are all part of something bigger than our own ‘bubble’ of clients, suppliers, partners and business opportunities.
Perhaps that’s why some of the most satisfying work I do earns me no money whatsoever. You may or may not know that I’m a proud supporter of the St Loye’s Foundation, whose head office is in Exeter.
St Loye’s Foundation is a charity specialising in helping people who have significant barriers to independence.
The Foundation does some fantastic work helping all sorts of people become engaged and economically active members of society.In some cases medical conditions such as autism make it more difficult for people to access work, and sometimes people need a bit of help following long-term illness. Or it might be that people need support because of difficult events in their life or because they’ve been out of the workforce for an extended time bringing up a family.
The Foundation also does some great work to support veterans and people leaving the armed forces – helping them focus on future opportunities and directions.
Being able to help the Foundation, even just for a day each month is a privilege and it’s always a day I look forward to. And while it’s easy to take a cynical view of CSR as a PR opportunity I think that for individual business people all over the country it’s much more personal and much more important.
So if you’ve ever found yourself thinking that ‘there must be more to life than making money’ I’d urge you to find a charity that could use your skills and knowledge – even if it’s just for a few hours. It will broaden your perspective and make you feel connected to something bigger than yourself or your business.
I’d also urge you to consider making a donation to this excellent charity: https://mydonate.bt.com/charities/stloyesfoundation