Investors in People Silver Award 2020

It’s my accreditation and I’ll rant if I want to…

On Friday we heard that not only had we upheld our Investors in People accreditation that we were first awarded in 2014, but we’d actually raised our award status by two levels and are now accredited Silver against the Investors in People standard. This is an achievement by us all, for us all, and we are all beyond proud.

On Friday we heard that not only had we upheld our Investors in People accreditation that we were first awarded in 2014, but we’d actually raised our award status by two levels and are now accredited Silver against the Investors in People standard. This is an achievement by us all, for us all, and we are all beyond proud.

Investors in People provides an international standard in how to lead, manage and support people in your business. So our silver level accreditation is external recognition of one of our key values at Mash – heroing people. Every decision we make is driven by our respect for the people we interact it – whether that’s staff, colleagues, clients or suppliers.

But when it comes to people, the nature of our business as a staffing specialist presents some challenges. We are a small business with responsibility for thousands of employees. People are our product but must never be considered a commodity. And our staff in the field work incredibly hard for us everyday, but rarely step foot in the office.

So yes – treating our field staff as colleagues, acknowledging their aspirations as well as their needs, supporting their development – this takes a little more effort than in traditionally structured businesses. But as non-traditional business structures continue to multiply, never before have I seen so much evidence of this effort being glaringly ignored.

Whether it’s the big players of the gig economy making unfair demands on their work force, staff having to sign NDAs to hide sordid behaviour at The President’s Club dinner, or a vast number of indirect employees suffering at the hands of Carillion’s colourful accounting, there are so many examples of businesses not respecting the people that they are responsible for.

Of course businesses exist to make a profit. But that is not their only role. Businesses give people a livelihood, provide jobs for individuals to enjoy, learn from, and be challenged by. Being part of a company gives people a community, a sense of purpose, the opportunity to take pride in achievement and learn resilience in failure.

As a business owner, these are the gifts that I treasure most – so these are what I work hardest to protect. If I sound “holier than thou” I make no apology for it. Of course Mash isn’t perfect, but our recent endorsement by Investors in People shows that we are doing so many things right. And if I can inspire just one more business to put people on equal terms with profit, then this is a rant worth sharing.

And now for the champagne.

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