Employees, managers, business leaders and citizens, sustainable development concerns us all. However, it can be intimidating to initiate a sustainable development approach, especially since it covers aspects that are sometimes neglected. Today, we therefore consider the following question: Why educate for sustainable development? What can we learn that we don’t already know? And a lot of things, after all.
The importance of training employees in sustainable development
Despite the cognitive biases that lead us to think otherwise, sustainable development is not just a matter of Environmental Protection. Although this aspect is central to the notion of sustainable development, it only takes on its full dimension if it is associated with a economic and social approach.
And that, when you are a novice, it requires some training. Understanding the stakes and links of sustainable development is indeed not innate, and yet essential. And yes, with the major issues of ecological and social transition at the center of concerns, it is also the professions that are changing. Because to remain competitive and meet the market’s growing expectations in terms of ethics, companies must get up to speed, adapt and collectively develop their practices.
However, to initiate a real global approach within the company, it is necessary to give employees the means to embark on this adventure. It is about allowing everyone to acquire the necessary skills to develop their professions, in particular through training. In addition, it is crucial to federate around the values conveyed by this approach and to understand its merits. Because to work well together, it is better to make sure that we will in the same direction.
Federating its teams, a crucial issue for the organization
Federating its teams around a sustainable development approach reinforces the feeling of belonging to the organization. At the same time, it improves the well-being of employees and adds more meaning to work, in particular by aligning personal values with those of the organization. Indeed, many employees say they feel too great a gap between their vision, their values and those of the managers who they work for, resulting in a certain resignation and unease.
Beyond the interest for employees, educating in sustainable development is a non-negligible lever for action for the organization. Because reinventing a work model in your company is a huge innovation opportunity. Once the teams are on board and convinced of the process, it is possible to jointly develop and implement a powerful and relevant CSR strategy. This will allow boost the economic growth of the company.
And yes, despite popular belief, sustainable development and economic growth go hand in hand. Strong engagement can build customer and stakeholder loyalty, while attracting and retaining talent. Indeed, according to a study carried out by the Edhec NewGen Talent Centerthe raison d’être of a company is a strong driver of attraction (71%) and commitment to work (67%) for young graduates of Grandes Ecoles.
So why educate for sustainable development? For a thousand reasons.