Senior Leader Volunteering

Bringing senior leaders closer to the cost of living crisis

In the thick of the ‘cost of living crisis’, the Centrica CEO set a challenge for his eighty-strong senior leadership team to all volunteer with frontline organisations.

The objectives were twofold. First, to bring the leaders closer to how rising energy bills were impacting real people, including British Gas customers, colleagues and others in the communities they serve. Second, to use their experience and skills to support frontline advice-giving organisations who were part-funded by the British Gas Energy Trust.

One of the nine projects saw the British Gas Energy leadership team spend the day with the energy advice team at the Bromley By Bow Centre in East London.

In the morning, they joined an Energy Workshop with clients and shadowed the team’s 1-2-1 advice sessions, hearing people’s real, and often chastening, experiences of the energy crisis.

In the afternoon, they ran a bespoke workshop for the energy advisers themselves – who rarely benefit from external training. This focused on the advisers’ chosen topic of how to “communicate with impact”.

The British Gas team gained a deeper understanding of the energy challenges that millions of people were facing and identified a range of ways they could continue to support the charity and its advisers going forward.

“The British Gas leadership team and I had an amazing and insightful day with the impressive team at the Bromley by Bow Centre. We learned a lot from witnessing first-hand the experiences of energy customers in debt during our morning session. In the afternoon, we felt privileged to have the chance to give something back, as we led a training session for the customer-facing team at the centre. It was an unforgettable day and we hope that all of our teams take up the opportunity of using their volunteering days to learn and to give something back to our communities.”

Catherine O’Kelly, Managing Director, British Gas Energy