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Awards nominations are starting to roll in for the 2024 Asset Finance Connect (AFC) Summer Awards. Celebrating innovation and industry best practice in auto and equipment finance, the Awards will be held on 9th July 2024 at City Central in a spectacular setting within the grounds of the Honourable Artillery Company in London. Book your table now for the year’s must-attend event!

One of this year’s ‘people’ awards is the AFC Social Award highlighting an individual, team or organisation which has made a substantial contribution to some aspect of managing the social impact of an organisation or the industry.

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The individual winner of the 2023 Social Award was Shire Leasing’s new Managing Director, Helen Lumb, for her “drive and passion for developing other people as well as promoting equality and inclusion in the workplace.”

On winning the award, Helen said, “I am really proud to have won the AFC Social Award. My involvement in this area really goes back six years ago when I started to champion mental health as part of the Leasing Foundation D&I group as well as taking Shire through a Staff Mental Health and Wellbeing programme.

“I have also championed these areas more widely in the industry as a whole, in particular through mental health events, both face to face and online during the pandemic, with both the Leasing Foundation and the FLA.”

Helen Lumb was nominated for the award by Shire Leasing’s CEO, Mark Picken, who described Helen as Shire Leasing’s social conscience, “a passionate and determined individual whose dedication to this cause has been recognised already by the FLA as a newly appointed director and the Leasing Foundation, again as a director. This recognition is not just for championing wellbeing but diversity, inclusion, social conscience and many other similar subjects. She doesn’t just talk the talk, she walks the walk. More likely, as they will discover, she runs the run!”

As well as her day-to-day role, Helen has been involved in numerous new social initiatives at Shire Leasing, including the introduction of Motivational Maps in 2015 - a tool aimed at understanding motivation in individuals, which looks at motivational factors related to relationships, achievement and growth and helps individuals to understand themselves as well as the motivations of others; the Wellbeing initiative which she proposed and championed in 2017, encompassing four streams – physical wellbeing, mental and psychological wellbeing, professional wellbeing and social wellbeing; starting Shire’s Sustainability initiative, chairing, championing and driving the People, Planet, Profit programme throughout Shire’s business model and objectives; and Shire’s volunteering scheme, promoting that ‘giving back’ in the form of volunteering, is a great way to develop oneself, support Shire’s community and philanthropy and recognise the significant benefits from supporting and volunteering in charities and social enterprises.

“Helen holds a strong belief that connection to other people and our community is fundamental to protecting mental health and inclusion in the workplace, making everyone feel valued irrespective of background, is essential to achieving this,” according to Picken.

The social impact of an organisation is extremely important, according to Lumb: “We have to remember that ultimately organisations are run by people and the culture within the organisation is therefore driven by the people who run those businesses. Many of us have our own social conscience and it is therefore important that our values are aligned if we are able to bring our whole selves to work, be motivated and add value to our organisations.

“By promoting wellbeing, fairness, equality and inclusion, we create better working environments for our staff as well as promoting ethical business practices that benefits everyone.”

Don’t miss out on the chance to nominate companies, individuals and teams to be recognised for their hard work, innovation and service to the industry – submit your entry today!

To see a full list of the award categories and individual awards, visit Asset Finance Connect’s Summer Awards website where organisations can add their nominations for award winners and book their tables for this year’s must-attend event.

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