Stuart Seddon: Making a positive impact is what defines us

  01 MAY, 2017      COMPANY UPDATES , CSR
Stuart Seddon: Making a positive impact is what defines us

Anyone who has come across the Novus Property Solutions name over the past two years will know that being a responsible business is at the core of who we are.
 
Yes, we’re a respected property maintenance and refurbishment company with more than 115 years’ experience, but that doesn’t define us. What defines us is the impact we have on people’s lives and the legacy we leave behind in the communities where we work.
 
This has been illustrated perfectly thanks to the incredible efforts of a team of Novus employees, who recently undertook a two-week refurbishment of the Busy Bees Nursery in the Parkwood area of Cape Town. The project has brought into sharp focus the impact that companies like Novus can have not just in the UK, but across the world.
 
The opportunity came about through our relationship with Stoke-on-Trent College and is something that will live with everyone involved for the rest of their lives.
 
Due to budget constraints, the nursery hadn’t experienced any form of maintenance or refurbishment in years. The facility looked tired and in some areas, very dangerous. However, our team ensured that the whole building received essential repairs, key areas were painted and rain protection was constructed in certain areas of the playground.

The community came together and were quick to show their appreciation for the team’s efforts in delivering a transformation that means the children now have a vibrant, colourful and safe environment in which to learn.
 
Not only do activities like this impact on communities, but they can also have lasting effects on the staff involved. The Novus staff involved soon developed a robust team ethic, as they were each challenged mentally and physically. It’s this approach to giving our staff life-changing opportunities that has seen us shortlisted for the Employer of the Year category at the forthcoming Construction News Awards 2015.
 
This recognition, along with our title as Santander Responsible Small Business of the Year last year, is proof that giving back to communities and your staff can have a hugely positive impact on your business.
 
If you haven’t considered how your business impacts on the community, there’s never been a better time to start. 

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Sharing ideas and successes about Learning and Development

SHARING IDEAS AND SUCCESSES ABOUT LEARNING AND DEVELOPMENT

Paul Nixon, our Learning and Development Advisor has been bringing likeminded people together to share their ideas, successes and pains. Here Paul tells us more about the Learning & Development gatherings…     Why do you hold a L&D gathering and who attends? I have been attending a gathering of Learning and Development professionals for the past 12 months.  The group meets every month in Manchester which poses two challenges for me.  Firstly, there is the commute to Manchester which eats up time in my day and, secondly, meeting every month was too much of a commitment.  I’m also a born and bred Stoke lad who wants to see innovation and a sense of community being developed in my city.  There is a quite a varied group of people that attend, all contributing unique and valuable experiences.  We have individuals from ICO, Leek United Building Society, Vodafone and Water Plus along with one or two independent consultants.   What have the group been discussing? When I set up the group, I was very clear about its purpose: sharing the successes we’ve recently had, the challenges we’ve faced and discussing any new trends, ideas or opportunities that may lie ahead.  This means everyone has a story to tell and experience to share.  It’s a relaxed, informal setting where people can speak openly, build relationships and find support.  There are only two major rules: no sales pitches and no touting for business!   What are the benefits to bringing likeminded people together? As the only person in Learning and Development at Novus, the group has provided me with a great opportunity to meet likeminded people who understand my successes and challenges.  Equally, hearing the experiences that other people have had is encouraging and motivating.  Learning about how other people have tackled similar problems helps me to be more creative and innovate in my own workplace.   When do you meet?  We meet every other month, normally on the first Friday of the month, although this is flexible.  We meet in the city centre at The Quarter café, who have kindly allowed us to use a private space for free.  If anyone is interested in attending, please get in touch with Paul via email paul.nixon@novussolutions.co.uk