I often wonder whether people fully understand what our organisation means by the term “The Right Ethos”. And why our recruitment consultancy, which specialises with organisations that campaign, felt it important enough to use the term as its name.
Recently we successfully placed a candidate who I felt epitomised the sort of candidates that we want to attract to The Right Ethos. She had the qualities that our client needed for them to succeed.
She had about four years experience as a fundraiser for a hospital. I think she was grateful for the job but not comfortable fundraising for a charity which she wasn’t particularly passionate about.
She had gained very transferable skills and experience useful for most charities and campaigns. She came to The Right Ethos determined to work for a campaign that she cared about. I interviewed her and was convinced by her enthusiasm to work for a cause that campaigned to improve our society or our world.
We fortunately had a role that was perfect for her – however, the salary was about 18% less than she was currently earning. But she didn’t need any persuading that it was a good move for her. She was determined to work for this campaign – even though financially she would be out of pocket.
The best part of the job of a recruitment consultant is when a candidate, who you’ve got to know and understand, which is necessary if you are going to match them with the right role and organisation, gets the job they really want. And this is what exactly happened – she was delighted to hear the news. Happily resigned to taking a drop in salary, as for her this was taking her in the right direction for her career and her life.
Now she has The Right Ethos. But it isn’t just about commitment. I think our successful candidates are a different breed to people who want to work for a conventional charity. For the candidates that we select, it’s also about wanting to be involved in political change. Not simply about offering charity, but about working for justice as they can see a wrong that needs to be fundamentally righted.
When I first drafted this article for ngomedia last December, the newspapers were dominated with the news of the unfortunate British teacher in Sudan, who inadvertently caused offence with the name of a toy. This issue achieved many times the coverage and causing so much more outrage and anguish in the UK media than the death of over 400,000 people in the conflict in Sudan in recent years.
This for me is an example of the incorrect balance of priorities we still have in the UK.
I don’t believe our society is wholly wrong – but something is clearly a bit skewed, if we give more attention to the imprisonment of one British person against the deaths of so many Sudanese people.
Another example of this being that of the extreme amounts of media focus on the fate of one child, Madeline McCann whilst other children in the UK and across the world are mistreated or killed.
That’s why we firmly believe that best placed to correcting this and the several other problem situations or injustices are the many campaigning organisations that The Right Ethos works with – be it on social justice, human rights, animal rights, democracy, housing, the environment or other just causes. And their individual staff members working for justice and long term change. To do so their starting point is having the right ethos.