We are constantly hearing a lot about becoming more social as business owners, and thinking more about our suppliers and where we source our products and materials. The UK government is increasingly trying to do more and more, espcially during the lead up to the elections, to encourage business owners to be ‘more social,’ but what does that actually mean for us, and what exactly can we do to help?
‘Being more social’ can mean a variety of things, but let’s face it, we are all busy and have businesses to administer, clients to services and so we want to be social, but we want it to be easy for us and not time consuming. Every business is different and can be more social in different ways, below is a list of ways that your business can tick that box and help the economy, the disadvantaged, and even help your own business in the process.
Review your supply chain
If you are a business that sources and sells products, where are you sourcing them? How are they being delivered? Is your supplier ‘social’? These are all questions that you should be asking your suppliers, and if you don’t like the answer, find another supplier. Social enterprises are springing up all over the place now and I bet that you would be able to find a social enterprise that can supply the products you need. Do check out the Buy Social Directory as you can search through suppliers that are social enterprises.
Employ and train the unemployed
There is a very unfair stigma attached to unemployed people – they are often labeled ‘unemployable’ or ‘unskilled’ however, that may not be the case. Being unemployed doesn’t mean that the individual cannot do that job, so as part of you being social, why don’t you employ somebody who is unemployed? The Government is really pushing this agenda at the moment and has a number of schemes that can help you as a business fund the taking on of extra staff. The apprenticeships initiative is a great example of this because you, as an employer, can receive funding towards taking on an extra member of staff. You can be social, and be commercial at the same time.
Doing ‘good business’ isn’t enough anymore, you must ‘do good’ as a business.