Charity founder gives Marlborough bosses a lesson in ethics
The founder of an organisation that helps businesses to become more ethical says Corporate Social Responsibility, Sustainability, Purposeful Business, and Creating Shared Value must be more than just buzzwords.
Bill Huxley, who founded Business Against Poverty to support the work of the Trowbridge-based charity People Against Poverty, told business leaders in Marlborough that their future profitability depended on them becoming more ethical.
“Millennials – people born between 1982 and 2002 – are demanding a different value set from businesses they buy from, and want to work for,” he said.
Bill showed members of Marlborough Chamber of Commerce the results of a survey, which show that ethical trading featured highly in the purchase decision-making process of Millennials.
When asked for the top five things that made them respect a company, they said:
- Gives back to the community
- Fair labour practices
- Products and services that do what they promise to do
- Products and services that truly help people in need
- Being eco-friendly
Meanwhile, 62 percent of Millennials say they want to work for a company that makes a positive impact on the world.
He told networkers at the Chamber’s business breakfast on Wednesday (October 19) that business owners and managers needed to “engage with employees about a sense of purpose other than shareholder value,” while understanding the need to be profitable: “In order to share the wealth, you have top create wealth.”
“Most businesses say they are ethical, but I could go into most businesses and find something unethical,” he said.
“Ethics isn’t just about doing something because the law tells you to, it’s about doing something because it’s the right thing to do.”