The Fairer Future inquiry pinpointed the roadblocks preventing many organisations from being a true force for good. But it also discovered shining examples of leaders who have managed to overcome these barriers and take meaningful action.

Here, you’ll find out more about how they did it, the lessons learnt along the way, and the long-term impact this has had. And to bring it to life in your own organisation, use the “challenges to my peers” from the leaders who contributed to the research to start the conversation within your boardroom.

Creating a fairer future with the power of business
“My challenge to my peers…”
Paul Polman: “We’ve overshot the planet’s limits by such a huge margin that ‘less bad’ isn’t good enough anymore.”
With Paul Polman, vice chair of the United Nations Global Compact and former CEO of Unilever.
Sir Ken Olisa: “Do not waste the unvarnished look at our society that this crisis has given us.”
With Sir Kenneth Olisa, lord-lieutenant of Greater London, and chair of Restoration Partners, Interswitch Group, and Proxymity.
Susan Hooper: “If you've learned how to succeed in business, you're capable of learning how to deal with this. So just get on with it.”
With Susan Hooper, co-founding director of Chapter Zero: The Directors’ Climate Forum and chair of Caresourcer.com and EBS.
Baroness Patience Wheatcroft: “Ask: do the least well-paid of your employees earn enough to live without state handouts?”
With Baroness Patience Wheatcroft, member of the House of Lords and former NED of Stellantis, Barclays, and St James’s Place.
Richard Burge: “At the end of every performance review you do, ask: ‘Have I been unfair to you at all in the past year?’”
With Richard Burge, CEO of the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry and co-founder of ESG Validation.
David Bennett: “Don’t do nothing because you can’t do everything.”
With David Bennett, chair of Virgin Money in 2020, having been deputy chair since 2015. He’s also chair of Allfunds
Sir Brendan Barber: “Start by recognising the continued existence of burning injustices.”
With Sir Brendan Barber, deputy chair of the Financial Services Culture Board.
Stephen Welton: “Be empowered rather than engulfed.”
With Stephen Welton, founder and executive chair of BGF.
David Dickson: “Champion fairness to make a real difference to people’s lives.”
With David Dickson, chair of Family Business Matters, Western Pension Solutions, and St. Leonard’s Hospice.
Sarah Flannigan: “Put aside the false belief that you know better and start truly listening to all your stakeholders.”
With Sarah Flannigan, chair of Riverford Organic, Yeo Valley Farms, and Sawday’s.
Lord Kerslake: “Start by bringing your discussions about fairness to life.”
With Lord Bob Kerslake, chair of Peabody and the Centre for Public Scrutiny.
Recommended resources for changemakers
Further reading

The Fairer Future inquiry

Find out what keeps our community of business leaders awake at night, and what it will take to create a fairer future for all.

“I honestly don’t know a business leader who doesn’t see that there are major issues on inequality, and that it may get even worse.”
~ Sir Mike Rake, former Chair, BT Group, Worldpay
Explore the report