In today’s world, Millennials make up a significant portion of today’s target business audience. Millennials are the two billion people born between the early 1980s and 2000. 81% of millennials believe business has a key role to play in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It’s an important milestone for the profession as we drive forward efforts on corporate sustainability and responsibility. The SDGs recognise and give an international platform to the fact that business can and should have a role to play in furthering sustainable development.
You must be having a lot of questions striking in your head.
Why are the SDGs relevant for business? Why should business care? How can businesses approach the SDGs? What are the challenges we face?
The SDGs must become central to core business goals and investment decisions, according to Unilever CEO Paul Polman, who believes that the SDGs offer the “greatest economic opportunity of a lifetime.” He says Unilever’s “sustainable living” brands (which it defines as those that have integrated sustainability into their purpose and products) are growing 30% faster than the rest of the company.
Why are the SDGs relevant for business?
The world is changing! We have finite natural resources, dwindling biodiversity and ecosystems, are in the midst of a digital revolution and we have an increasingly urbanized and migrating population. Business doesn’t just impact on these global trends but business is also impacted by these trends. Especially in the case of changing business expectations. We don’t just expect business be economically viable anymore- one purpose of making a profit. We expect them to be environmentally mindful and socially responsible.
This becomes even more apparent amongst the millennial generation who are changing the landscape of the working world. Millennials don’t want to work for organizations that exist just to make a profit. But rather they want to work for businesses that have values, make ethical decisions, have responsible supply chains, value human rights, are environmentally conscious and active in the communities where they do business. They believe in purpose beyond profit.
This is relevant because of the fact that millennials will make up 75%of the workforce by 2030. 2013 is also the deadline by which we aim to achieve the global goals, and businesses will need to find new ways to attract, retain and engage and motivate these employees.
We need to think of the SDGs as a potential business opportunity, as a driver of investment. Tackle it like any business issue and take advantage of the opportunity to move the needle on Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability from the margins of business to being fundamental to business strategy, embedded in business as usual.
For example Goal 13: Climate Action
Climate change is predicted to drive 100 million more people into poverty in the next 15 years unless action is taken. We know the most poor in the world will be the most affected but no one is immune. Climate change could cut the value of the world’s financial assets by $2.5tn, according to the first estimate from economic modeling, potentially propelling us into another financial crisis.
Deutsche Post DHL Group located in Bonn, Germany is the world’s leading mail and logistics company. The Group is focused on being first choice for customers, employees and investors in its core business activities worldwide. As a longstanding partner of the UN, Deutsche Post DHL Group strongly supports all Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
Environmental protection is also high on their agenda as well. To drive the logistics industry toward a sustainable future, they are aiming for zero emissions by 2050.
As they continue to expand the use of e-mobility and green delivery solutions in their operations, they are also driving the innovation of environmentally friendly technologies and fuels, such as biofuels for aviation. And as the pioneer in green logistics, they offer standardized products and customized logistics solutions that make their customers’ supply chains greener.
For companies to succeed in tomorrow’s world, mindsets, technologies, and business models will need to rethink what it means to offer goods and service to a consumer marketplace. Especially when Millennials will drive that market.