Businesses are increasingly making strategic decisions around their corporate sustainability policies. This has became more prevalent in recent years, as individuals, community organisations and governments are incresingly prioritising sustainability as an important aspect of corporate and social policies. Proactive organisations are already reaping the benefits from their forward-thinking sustainable practices.
Yet, ‘sustainability’ can have a plethora of meanings, depending on the context. Sustainability, particularly within businesses, draws attention to the importance of issues such as climate change, corruption, rule of law, sustainable employment, human rights, consumption, and supply chain practices.
We take a look at some of the ways sustainability can improve the long-term profitability of a business.
Sustainable business models work towards tackling climate change by aiming for zero carbon emissions, waste and discharge or even going palm oil free. Doing so can also reduce costs, minimise rises and increase the resilience of a business. Sustainable companies have higher carbon productivity than their less sustainable counterparts, and derive more of their revenue from clean goods and services.
Another important aspect of sustainable business models is the implementation of sustainable employment practices. This not only includes promoting greater economic participation of women and minority groups, but also sustainable pay rates for all employees. Sustainable business strategies work better in the long run when workers are paid with salaries and benefits that allow them to live happy and sustainable lives within their communities. This builds loyalty within the organisation, benefiting the company through increased productivity and creativity, as well as reducing the risk of mismanagement or fraud.
Sustainable corporate risk management
It is essential to implement sustainable business practices as a part of corporate risk management. Depending on the company, this can include making sure that all other businesses that are connected through the supply chain engage in ethical practices, sourcing environmentally friendly materials, not engaging in business with organisations that have bad reputations, and making sure that it’s possible to continue the production of all goods and services for years to come.
Rule of Law Principles
Sustainable businesses also combat corruption by implementing rule of law principles in their operations and initiatives. These principles are important both for the human rights of employees and for the commercial interests of the company.
Sustainability is important for all businesses today, regardless of their size or place in the marketplace. Businesses are increasingly finding that implementing sustainable practices improves corporate culture, as well as creating more reliable products and increasing long-term profitability.