secretleaders | Alain de Botton & Anne-Marie Huby: How to do good, better

Alain de Botton & Anne-Marie Huby: How to do good, better

With host Dan Murray laid up in hospital, this special live episode is hosted by none other than the feisty, joyous force of nature, Resi founder, Alex Depledge.

“We have a foundation at Resi that does pro bono work for architecture. People look at me a little bit sceptical, like, what’s the motivation? You can’t really earn a profit and do good at the same time. So why is building a for profit company better for society than building a charity?”

Alex, alongside special guests Anne-Marie Huby of Just Giving and Alain de Botton of School of Life, discuss social enterprise, building for profit companies for good, and the question of whether this does or doesn’t make more of an impact on society than charities.

“When you think of the size of the charity sector, which in this country is commendably big, but you look at the wider overall economy, it stands to reason that if we want to live in a more fulfilling, equal, decent society, we’re going to have to attend to what companies do.”

Both of our guests, Anne-Marie and Alain, share their motivations for why they chose to create their businesses as for profits, rather than as charities, and spoiler alert, it’s not all about financial gain.

“A business that wants to achieve good and make money has a double role, a business that merely wants to make money has a single mission. It’s much harder to be a so-called good capitalist, because you’re trying to hit two targets. You’ve got to work doubly hard.”

Inspirational and insightful, this is another cracking, not-to-be-missed live episode.

We chat about:

  • Churches don’t have the monopoly on doing good
  • Good capitalism v bad capitalism
  • Maslow’s hierarchy of needs
  • The core issues with building charities
  • How can we make capitalism work
  • The effective altruism movement


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The Secret Leaders podcast features interviews with key figures from the UK tech and creative ecosystem. From entrepreneurs (both early and latter stage), to journalists, VCs - and even royalty - the series profiles those who have helped shape the nation's culture of innovation and growth.

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