Gaining traction in the world of business in recent years, the concept of Sustainability has become synonymous with ‘green,’ ‘eco-friendly,’ ‘ethical,’ ‘strategy,’ ‘longer-term results’ and ‘resource conservation’; while also dragging with it the decade-old interpretation of reputation, risk management and philanthropy.
But, no way is the grass as green as it should be. Many of our world’s largest corporate players continue to hide behind ignorance instead of understanding how Sustainability can directly-and positively-affect their businesses.
According to CEO of REI, Sally Jewell, “There is no margin without a market and no mission without a margin.” This means that your products/services are good only as long as they have a market. Therefore, in order to add value, businesses must incorporate responsibility and accountability into business operations.
Once you have a market of consumers, it becomes your responsibility as a business by default, to ensure that they are educated (you need their purchasing power), informed (you want to make sure you have the competitive edge while ensuring your product is resonating in the market), and engaged because engagement drives innovation, brand loyalty and ultimately, a business’ Sustainability.
For any business to be successful in the long-run, Sustainability must be an integral part of the corporate puzzle; not as an add-on or an initiative, but as a means to the goal where we truly sustain each other by offering products and services that are symbiotic and inclusive of our planet and societal needs.
Source: An Excerpt from Sustainability: The ‘S’ of Business by ThistlePraxis Consulting