A growing number of organizations are integrating sustainability into their business strategy certainly realizing they will act best by doing good. Likewise, during a recent McKinsey survey, 70 per cent of respondents said their companies have proper governance of sustainability in situ. But what exactly it means when we are talking about ‘sustainability in business?’
What is sustainability in business?
The concept of sustainability certainly comes with three pillars: economic, social, and environmental (also called the three Ps: profit, people, and the planet). Also, its focus is to satisfy the requirements of today without blowing future generations’ chances to fulfil their needs tomorrow.
Furthermore, by sustainability in business, we mean two categories: its effect on the environment and its effect on society.
For a business to become sustainable, it then has to concentrate on long-term strategies for creating a positive impact on those categories. Sustainability is, thus, about framing business decisions in terms of years or perhaps decades and considering more factors than simply financial benefits. Secondly, it’s about setting reasonable business goals and dealing towards them all along.
Its various goals are as follows:
- Cut emissions
- Prevent pollution
- Use sustainable materials
- Lower energy usage
- Use green-certified office products
- Encourage sustainable behavior
- Network with like-minded organizations
And when a business achieves their set goals – cutting emissions by 5%, for instance – they can call themselves “sustainable.”
Why is sustainability important?
Beyond helping curb those global challenges, sustainability may also drive business success. Several investors today use Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) metrics to research an organization’s ethical impact and sustainability practices. Investors check out factors for example a company’s carbon footprint, water usage, community development efforts, and board diversity.
Research also shows that companies with high ESG ratings have a lower cost of debt and equity. There sustainability initiatives can, thus, help improve financial performance while fostering public support. Then, as per McKinsey, nearly 3,000 employees said the strongest motivating factors to adopting a sustainable mindset are to align with a company’s goals, missions; or values; build, maintain, or improve reputation; meet customer’s expectations, and develop new growth opportunities.
According to a 2017 report by MIT, only 25% of companies incorporated sustainability in their business model though 90% of executives found it to be significant. What’s more, 24% of companies see sustainability as vicinity of competitive advantage, missing the very fact that compliance stands firstly.
5 strong brand examples of sustainability practices
The companies listed below are solid samples of how sustainability in business is often ingrained in its every aspect. Also, these brands implement sustainable strategies to market core values and conscious consumption to the planet.
1. Christy Dawn
This LA-based brand makes dresses out of deadstock fabrics, the things manufacturers usually leave behind on sewing tables and, therefore, waste.
Launched back in 2013, the corporate, thus, promotes sustainability everywhere they will. They create edition pieces, reduce the usage of cloth, deliver their product in wooden boxes instead of polyurethane bags. Therefore, advocate minimalism to support the general image of the brand.
PepsiCo presents its sustainability goals and annual reports since 2005. they’re about three aspects: firstly human sustainability, secondly talent sustainability, then environmental sustainability (the brand works on minimizing their footprint and operates during a manner to guard resources).
Also, by 2025, they decide to reduce added sugar and fat in products, design 100% recyclable packaging, and reduce their waste generation by 50%. Additionally, PepsiCo continues to develop various workforce and advance respect for human rights.
This distributor of wine and spirits certainly demonstrates sustainability by using climate-sensitive and water-intensive ingredients for his or her products. For Brown-Forman, it is a good way to create consumer relationships and endure their brand.
The firm aims at protecting natural resources for future generations. So, they partner with other businesses for sustainability initiatives like concentrating on reused or recycled materials and organizing joint actions to unravel global climate change problems. Likewise, other responsible brands, they care about employee relations and variety thereby.
This sports brand integrates sustainability in business across all its products sold. Back in 2013, they also created the Making app, revealing the sustainability index of their materials publicly, and galvanizing other manufacturers to make a more sustainable design, too.
Thus, Nike understands its environmental impact in minimizing the brand’s footprint. So, they work with like-minded suppliers, participate in global climate change summits, promote a circular economy, and build a worldwide community of responsible people for creating a more sustainable future.
In recent years, the brand has increased its usage of renewable materials in vehicles. They’ve consequently reduced their global waste by 5.5% in 2018 and got 14.5% reduction in water use since 2010. Their plan is, therefore, to create100% renewable energy for all manufacturing plants globally by 2035.
Ford Motor Company then invests millions in electrified vehicles, promotes volunteering, and supports minority, women, and veteran-owned businesses. Thus, celebrating diversity and enhancing people’s lives the way they will.
To sum up
As Felip Vidiella from Dow Chemical once mentioned in their presentation:
So, within the light of it, let the planet realize your big missions and consider sustainable practices which may align with it.
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