THE MOST IMPORTANT BIT ON THIS BLOG IS AT THE BOTTOM – DON’T FORGET TO READ IT.
I’m starting to write a new column on a popular website called India Incorporated (www.indiaincorporated.com) where I hope to interview high profile business leaders, professionals, and other such people on their views on their charitable interests and giving.
When researching and writing my book on Indian entrepreneurship, I was positively flabbergasted with the level of personal involvement that high profile people invest in giving back to good causes, which I found refreshing and inspiring. But, I wondered why we’d never read about such acts of kindness and generosity in our media. I know I’d be interested.
Was it because they felt that this was “private” i.e should not be spoken about? Well, no.
If you opened the Annual Report (which is a marketing document) of their businesses, you’d find sections on how they were making a social impact by leveraging their resources effectively – so my assumption that their charity was “private” proved to be wrong.
So, why is it that we don’t read about their views on the subject of ‘Giving’?
It’s this I hope to contribute.
What I need your help on is to compile a generic list of questions you’d like answered from business leaders on charitable giving. If you’d like to contribute, then please leave a comment at the end of this blogpost.
Have to congratulate Mayor Boris Johnson for launching the Team London initiative today with Samantha Cameron, Peter Andre, and Barbara Windsor in attendance today.
Whilst trying to model it on what Mike Bloomberg has done in New York, I’d like to encourage him to take a closer look at home for examples of success like Sewa Day (www.sewaday.org), which I’m totally supportive of.
Also, not really sure that they’ve set an ambitious target. If in year one Sewa Day managed to recruit 5,000 volunteers (of which the bulk were in London), I don’t see why the Team London team can’t stretch beyond the 10,000 target they’ve set. After all, BoJo’s volunteering czar – in her opening remarks outlined that volunteering seems to be in London’s DNA as 75% of all Londoners volunteered for good causes. If so, why just 10,000?
One of the good ideas that’s emerged is the recognition on ‘stars’ who go above & beyond the call of duty by pouring their time and resources to create a significant impact to a cause. I know there are many such awards, but you just can’t have enough of these – in such hard times, we need positive role models and inspiration to contribute to our local communities. For this reason, well done.
My only advice for the Team Londoners is to ensure this turns into a real, wide ranging, initiative that reaches out to all marginalised communities & utilises its best resources – it’s people.
Londoners do care. Wish you the very best.