Hey homes, how are you, how are you, well? Good, thanks for asking about me by the way I’m fine. Rude. Anyway with the recent factory collapse in Bangladesh it seems that our attention is once more drawn to the ethics in business, whether it is the companies obligation to maximise profit, or to care primarily for its stakeholders, some of whom are forced to work in sub-standard conditions in order to maximise profit margins (wow that was a long sentence, look how clever I am). It seems to be the general belief that you cannot both care about your companies ethical stance as well as have a solid cold business with soaring profit. Well ladies and gentlemen you are so wrong I am about to knock your socks off and hand them back to you, oh you’re very welcome.
I have been a huge fan of the Liz Earle skin care brand for years now, not only did her products bring me through the acne years but, unlike lots of brands, she caters to young people without resorting to harsh chemicals, as all her products are organic. Furthermore, unlike some of the companies involved in the Bangladesh factory collapse, she actually travels herself to where her products are sourced ensuring that her workers are treated ethically. Writing in her latest book (she has written over 30, oh my God) ‘Skincare Secrets’ she says “one of my own research projects is with women’s cooperatives in Uganda and Southern Sudan, where the Shea butter is harvested without either slave or child labour and a fair price payed to growers”. Liz Earle is now also the UKs leading, award-winning, independent beauty brand, so you can’t argue that she has had to compromise her success in order to run an ethical business.
Another problem we are facing with businesses today are impact they have on the environment, as growing products overseas obviously means shipping, and shipping means ships, which means carbon emissions, which means humanities slow demise (debatable if you’re a fundamentalist but not if you’re sane). You will turn to me and say ‘Liz grows products all over the world, supporting communities which benefit from her fair trading, she’s therefore destroying the environment, the do-gooding witch!’ Well she has you there again! The Liz Earle Beauty Co. not only won the Green Business Award, at the Island Business Awards in 2006, but all Liz Earle brochures, leaflets etc are printed with one of the UKs number one carbon-neutral printing companies as well as using 100% vegetable inks. She also has a ‘Green Team’ whose role and searing passion in life is to be the environmental conscience within the company – holy cow.
Of course anyone whose ever read my blogs, check out ‘Work It, Baby’ and ‘The F-Word’ if you need convincing, knows that I’m a firm believer in treating women seriously in business, we are the focus of millions of pounds worth in beauty advertising and are the main buyers globally. This would seemingly mean that women are equally as apparent in the workforce, especially within the beauty industry, but this is not the case. To me, therefore, Liz Earle isn’t only a pioneer of female role-models within the business but also kind of a rock star, working her way from the bottom in order to found a product she truly believes in without losing sight of her moral compass. She also isn’t a hypocrite, living her life as she preaches and constructing her own organic farm, supporting a natural active lifestyle through any walk of life that you choose – which is something I do! (We should totally be best friends)
So not only is it possible to be both ethical and successful you can also be an ethical and successful woman. Liz Earle therefore also gets the much coveted ‘Welcome To The Alternate Planet’ Award for being a kick-ass super-swag Lady with a capital ‘L’, wherever she may go my custom will follow.