Colleague volunteering is an integral part of our CONNECT culture to drive social bonding internally and stimulate interaction with the local community. Art, Children, Environment and Local Issues are the key themes of our volunteering programmes. In the past decade, we have introduced several measures to build this culture within the group. Key drivers are a key performance indicator (community service hours) and the annual Global CONNECT Events.
The result was very encouraging and certain benefits of employee volunteering were observed: stronger teamwork with better internal communication, improved colleague engagement, and the building of brand awareness. Hotels have also maintained strong relationships with local community organisations.
We support local communities through our operations and charity partnerships. We encourage recruiting the right talents, and buying products and services from the local area for our hotels. This is professionally evaluated by the EarthCheck benchmarking exercise every year. We also work closely with local charity partners like local food rescue charities to collect the surplus food from our kitchens to make delicious meals for the less fortunate.
Whilst we will continue our local charity works, we would like to expand our support to local businesses by sourcing our food produce locally. Local food sourcing not only helps support the small business holders in the area and but also minimises the carbon footprint of our dishes. We are committed to have at least 50% of our menu to be sourced from local farm, fisheries or homegrown.
We travel much more often than the past generations had and see the tourism business boom of the last few decades. Our industry is contributing to the various social and environmental problems such as overtourism, cultural conflict, and climate crisis. Tourism cannot be sustainable if we travel like business as usual. Conscious travellers should go mainstream. We are committed to inspire millions of people to be conscious travellers.
Most importantly, we want to inspire positive change for our society and environment. We want to create shared values amongst our colleagues, stakeholders and wider community through our operations and influence on others.
We are all guests of the Earth. More than a decade ago, every hotel began with the standard towel and linen reuse card to invite our guests joining our journey to save the environment. Five years later, we offered “CONNECT Conferences” sustainable meeting options to our meeting clients. But we have not advanced our guests engagement in sustainable travel ever since
We believe that people are unique. We respect every individual and believe that this is the essential value of bringing different individuals together. We welcome everyone to visit our hotels or join us as a team member. It is in our culture DNA to respect individual as well as embrace the differences amongst us. However, we understand that differences are not only limited to religion, sex, ethnicity, race, disability, age, gender identity, or sexual orientation. We are responsible to grow our business to be more inclusive and share our values with our next generation.
By leveraging on our local influence, coupled with global experience, we will take a proactive approach to ensure our values and commitment to diversity and inclusion reflect in the way we do our business. We hope to positively have an impact on the lives of our future talents and inspire millions of our guests and business partners. By 2030, we want to share our global knowledge and local experiences to inspire millions of youth and future talents to embrace differences who are our future guests, colleagues and neighbours.
We will first focus on these three commitments in our workplace:
Multi-generation: we have four or five generations (e.g. baby boomer, Generation X, Gen Y or Millennials, Gen Z) working side by side for the first time in history.
Gender: we have an average 50/50 gender parity in our workplace but not in certain roles and functions.
People who are physically or mentally challenged: a few of our hotels have their long service colleagues who are physically or mentally challenged. We appreciate and proactively engage this group of potential talents to join our company.
We will build collaborative relationships to maximise colleagues’ potentials in a motivated working environment