Unipart CEO leads Seeing is Believing visit

John Neill, Chairman and CEO of Unipart led a small group of business leaders on a Seeing is Believing visit on Tuesday 18 October in London to highlight the actions that business leaders can take to bring about change in society, thereby increasing their commercial advantage.

Future skills and responsible practices

The day kicked off with a discussion of the skills gap and how this affects the future of business. According to a CBI/Pearson Education and Skills Survey, 2015, 45% of businesses believe there won't be enough people with the right skills to fill their future high-skilled jobs.

Senior directors from KPMG: Karl Edge and Guy Stallard shared their strategy for attracting, upskilling and retaining the right talent, explaining their social mobility agenda as manifested in initiatives such as KPMG 360° and Brooks Mews Cafe.

Speaking with the apprentices who have benefited from both programmes, it was clear that business can find the right talent and skills they need for the future in the most unlikely places. Thereby supporting their communities and building their business at the same time.

Delegates then heard from businesses that are responding to the changing market conditions by behaving socially and commercially in a fair and transparent way. Fujitsu shared insight on how their strategic use of the Business Connector programme is helping to develop their future leaders and at the same time, contributing to communities of greatest need in the UK.

Being a responsible business is about doing well by doing good.

- John Neill,
Chairman and CEO, Unipart
Visit leaders Unipart shared the formula for their award winning employee engagement programme, modelled closely on Business in the Community’s Wellbeing framework. Solution Sciences said that their partnership with Business in the Community has exposed them to an inspiring network of businesses and also helped with vetting of their supply chain

The competitive advantage of responsible business

Professor David Grayson CBE of Cranfield University highlighted some research which clearly demonstrates that businesses who are more responsible are also more competitive. Delegates then heard first hand examples of the commercial benefits of Veolia’s Circular Economy business model and Styles&Wood’s Apprenticeship programmes

There was a general consensus that for business to prosper, they need to be more responsible. They also need to work with peers and organisations such as Business in the Community to deliver business strategies with responsibility at its core.

Find out more about The Prince’s Seeing is Believing, BITC’s programme giving senior business leaders first-hand insight into key social and environmental issues.

Visit participants.

Visit Leader

  • John Neill, Chairman and Group Chief Executive, Unipart

Business delegates

  • Andy Palmer, Chief Executive, Aston Martin Lagonda Ltd

  • Chen Wong, Associate Director, CSR Planning Division for EMEA, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ Ltd

  • Chris Sheppard, Group Chief Executive, European Metal Recycling

  • Ed Kamm, Partner, First Utility

  • Edward Hawthorne, Chairman and Chief Executive, Arnold Clark Automobiles

  • Fiona Booth, Head of Sector, Cabinet Office

  • Gary Shuttleworth, Managing Director, Dellner Woodville Ltd

  • Iain Blatherwick, Managing Partner, Browne Jacobson LLP

  • Lori Cunningham, Chief Digital Officer, Countrywide

  • Phil Hewitt, Metro Programme Director, Centro

  • Professor David Grayson CBE, Director Cranfield School of Management, Cranfield University

  • Wayne Sheppard, Chief Executive, Ibstock plc