RIP Bunny Manning - the man who taught me value

On the 11th of May it is the funeral of my Father in Law. It is a sad day.

“Bunny” provided me with one of the most important lessons of my life.  He was born, raised and now buried in Barbados. The images that you have of Barbados are probably a little different to mine. My imagery is of “liming”, cold banks and family.

When I married Nadia, I made a ridiculous 45 minute long wedding speech. It involved me breaking down in tears 7 times about how lucky I was.  Thinking back on the speech, I made a wedding speech about my father in law.

The theme of the speech was Social Capital.  When I met Nadia I had just finished a physics degree and a stint working in a bank.  I was cynical and practical. Nadia and I fought about things like “Social Capital” – those soft things couldn’t mean anything could they.  The idea that I can retain value by having friends. By doing favours. By being nice.

Bunny Manning had more Social Capital saved up than any man I had ever met.  He changed my thinking, and as a result the direction of everything that I have done since.  For Bunny, nothing was too much for anyone.  He was not a business man, he would take on crazy extra costs going the extra mile for his customers. He never charged more.  If someone needed a ride, a job done, a kind word, any favour, Bunny would do it. Religiously. 

My wedding was paid for by Social Capital.  Good friends hosted our reception. A friend made the cake. A friend supplied the beer. A friend took the photos. A friend married us. A friend drove us. Friends performed. A friend was the DJ. A friend made my wife’s dress. 

For a cynic, this was the proof I needed that social capital was real. One man taught me that.

Danaqa is a business built on the idea that there is value in the story and the social value of what we do. Thank you Bunny, you were absolutely unique. 

You will be missed.