Our social fabric has held together because of the economic strength of our country and the financial assistance schemes we were able to introduce. We are not as divided as some because of the level of shared belief in our society. All these things have helped get us through 2020, but they are all precious and we need to do much more to maintain them in the years to come.
As a business, I’d like to thank our people, as you’ve been amazing. And we’ve truly lived our purpose this year. We’ve done some fantastic work; been a great place to work and continued to contribute to society. Most of all, however, I’d like to thank our clients for your trust and your continued support. Our business relies on you and we continually strive to improve – and offer you impartial, reputation focused advice coupled with high quality implementation.
In recent months, our industry has been under intense scrutiny across the UK and the USA for its behaviour and ethics. Public relations agencies have been accused of forming covert campaigning groups, paying politicians, and mysteriously securing Government contracts. In these times we are dedicated to retaining the societal purpose that has underpinned our 31 years in business. Of course, there is more to do but we have now been carbon neutral, as assessed by Natural Capital Partners, for 11 years. For the 16th year in a row we were named by the Great Place To Work® Institute as one of the 50 best SME workplaces in the whole of the UK.
We are a business run by women and men that is 66% women, with the equity owned 61% by women and with a low gender pay gap. We have committed to combatting white privilege and white supremacy and set diversity targets for our business. We continue to support theatre charity HighTide, as we have for over 10 years now, as they continued their incredible work through the pandemic.
And this week we have decided to give back to the Government all of the money that we claimed through the furlough scheme this year to keep people in work, as we come through this crisis together.
As we lived our “purpose”, 2020 became our most successful year ever in terms of industry recognition. PRovoke Media named us as the EMEA Corporate Consultancy of the Year and the PRCA named us as International Consultancy of the Year – while both ICCO and the Financial Services Forum gave us their Diversity awards.
On that note, I’d like to once again thank all of our people and our clients for helping to get us through 2020. We couldn’t have done it without you. We wish all of you a fantastic end to the year and hopefully a chance to relax and enjoy the holidays. We will see you in 2021, when the challenges will still be great– but so will the opportunities.