How to create awareness for sustainability among employees

Making your company truly sustainable is a difficult task. The concept of sustainability must not only be introduced into the process and organizational structures, but must also reach the hearts and minds of the employees. How do you go about ensuring that sustainability becomes part of your company’s DNA and is reflected in the daily work of your employees? In short: a culture change is needed! In this article, we’ll share our experiences and insights on raising employee awareness.

Creating acceptance

In order to establish sustainability as a guiding principle in everyday corporate life and to integrate it into the daily work of employees, clear top management commitment is indispensable. However, you should not rely too heavily on strict rules. Every change is accompanied by fears on the part of the employees. Is economic success no longer important? How am I supposed to deal with new topics – I already have so much to do? Top management and executives are particularly important in reducing these fears. They should remove reservations in order to create willingness and acceptance for sustainability in the company. In our experience, two aspects are particularly effective: open dialog with employees and being a good example oneself.

Raising awareness for sustainability

Sustainability has become a crucial topic in almost every industry, and the amount of information available can be overwhelming. However, in order to sensitize your employees to sustainability, it is essential to approach the topic in a dialog and also provide them with expert knowledge. At Fashion Cloud, we have found a way to do this particularly effective. In our sustainability lecture series “Out of the green bag”, we invite internal and external speakers to share their stories with us in short lectures. The talks take place in a casual setting, provide space for questions as well as discussion, and offer the opportunity to get acquainted with new topics. We have already hosted experts from fields such as the sharing economy (Unown), sustainable finance (Tomorrow Bank), sustainable e-commerce (Yook), but also offered a stage to colleagues who want to share personal experiences and knowledge on topics such as carbon offsetting.

Green team events

Last but not least, we recommend internalizing one thing when it comes to raising employee awareness: Sustainability should be fun. In order to anchor the topic in the culture of your company in the long term, it is important to motivate your employees to adopt new values and behaviors despite the hurdles of everyday work. In addition to sustainability goals and competence development, we at Fashion Cloud focus on having fun together on the topic of sustainability. Our so-called “green team events” and “sustainability challenges” not only create shared memories, but also new ideas and great results. Fashion Cloud likes it sporty: At our charity run in 2020, we were able to offset 99 tons of CO2 together with ForTomorrow from the donations collected. And during our last challenge called #junebybike, we cycled almost 1,800 km together.

Want to learn more about sustainability at Fashion Cloud and our current initiatives and projects? Then take a look here!