Lee Petts makes it to the IoD Director of the Year awards finals

Nominated in the Corporate Responsibility category in the IoD North West Director of the Year Awards, Remsol managing director Lee Petts is up against Sandy Lindsay, of Tangerine PR in Manchester, for the coveted title.

Lee is passionate about the positive role businesses can play in society and believes that:

▪️ businesses are as much a part of the communities in which they reside as the people that live in them ▪️ practising being a good corporate citizen doesn't have to be a burden and isn't just for big businesses ▪️ responsible businesses typically outperform their rivals, gain more customers and are better at attracting and retaining staff

With a career in waste and environmental management spanning nearly 20 years, Lee is a committed advocate of 'green' business and makes an ideal candidate for this award.

But it's his work alongside the day job that makes him stand out, running a small business that has consistently punched above its weight when it comes to its corporate social responsibility or CSR.

Going the extra mile

Lee describes it as going the extra mile to do things that benefit communities in which a company operates and that it may affect, where this discretionary effort isn't necessarily directly linked to what the organisation does - although it can be - and where it isn't just about maximising profits. He sees it as tangible proof that businesses have a role to play in society that extends beyond just selling products or services to customers.

In the last four years, his Preston-based company Remsol has:

Made a £1,000 donation to Comic Relief; set up regular monthly donations to Marie Curie cancer care totalling over £1,000; involved primary school children from 483 schools across Lancashire in a competition to design an environmentally-themed calendar, with sales of nearly £2,000 raised and donated to the Lancashire Wildlife Trust; sponsored a barrel of beer at the Preston beer festival that raises money for a local church; arranged for Dragon's Den star, Rachel Elnaugh, to give a talk on women in business to Preston LadyFest; and hosted a series of free waste seminars for Lancashire SMEs.

Last year, it also took on the lead sponsorship role of the Lancashire Green Awards and participated in the two-day eco-schools conference at Accrington's St Christopher's high school - both aimed at encouraging people to adopt sustainable behaviours.

But it is his work with the Space Centre in Preston that he's perhaps most proud of. The disabled children's charity provides a unique, multi-sensory environment but almost had to close as a result of a severe funding shortfall. Launched in November 2013, Remsol's Recycle For Good initiative sees it donate a double-digit percentage of its recycling profits to the Space Centre until December 2015. It even produced a high quality film to explain the scheme and promote the Space Centre cause (which you can see here at http://bit./ly/recycleforgood)

Thrilled

Speaking about his selection as an awards finalist, Lee said: "I'm thrilled to have made it into the finals of the IoD North West Director of the Year Awards in the Corporate Responsibility category.

"These prestigious awards recognise the region’s best business talent, and the contribution they have made to the success of their organisations.

"I feel incredibly proud to be recognised for showing leadership in corporate responsibility, especially as director of a small business given that it's something that's often seen as the preserve of large corporates." Judging takes place later this month, with the awards culminating in a glittering black tie awards event at The Midland Hotel, Manchester, on the evening of Wednesday, 25th February.