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Sustainability as an employee motivator

Sustainability as an employee motivator

Sustainability and motivation are two concepts commonly found together, particularly when motivating your own employees. Many businesses constantly try to find best ways to motivate their employees towards active engagement in sustainable initiatives. This is because employees are recognised as critical players in advancing sustainability in any business. They play a crucial role in implementing initiatives as well as contributing with ideas and feedback.

For many employers, persuading and engaging employees is a mission that needs to be accomplished in order to reach and/or maintain business success. That is, the business wants employees to work for the green cause, not against it!

But what if, instead of needing to motivate employees, they are actually motivated only if the company IS sustainable and thinks green? Green approaches are becoming more appealing and many people today want to work for organisations that do more good than harm. Company reputation is definitely being improved by the green approach, when embraced. It results in employees having an amplified feeling of pride and satisfaction due to working for an admired and prestigious organisation.

A green mindset to business motivates employees as they feel more considered and respected. The rationale is that sustainable businesses care more about the wellbeing of their people compared to other businesses. An overall sense of fulfilment is also common amongst employees working for green employers. This is due to an appreciation that the organisation does not focus solely on profit but also on practices that have positive impact on others.

On one hand this phenomenon translates into a benefit for the organisation, with its ability to attract already motivated employees; on the other hand it could also constitute a challenge. Having more and more employees wanting to work for green businesses may put an increased pressure on these businesses, as they have to continuously meet higher standards of corporate and ethical behaviours.


Select one of the questions below and post your response in the Discussion area below. Don’t forget to include which question number you are responding to.

1. How do you think employers currently handle the pressure of increasingly green-aware employees?


2. How do you think businesses handle the pressure of increasingly green-aware consumers?

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This article is from the free online course:

Business Futures: Sustainable Business Through Green HR

RMIT University