CAGE Distance Framework
Want to expand overseas? The CAGE distance framework can help ensure you're constructing a solid global strategy in four areas: cultural, administrative, economic, and geographic. Learn how to leverage useful differences between countries, identify potential obstacles, and achieve global business success.
There's more to leadership than driving a team to profit. In fact, there's a word for looking beyond self-interest to prioritize individual growth: servant leadership. Try this course for a quick breakdown of what that is, how it works, and how it can lead to organizational success.
Strategy: Creating Value Inside Your Company
Have you ever wondered why certain companies are more successful than others? The answer is strategy: internal processes that control costs, allocate resources, and create value. This course from GLOBIS Unlimited can give you the tools you need for that strategic edge.
Strategy: Understanding the External Environment
To plan strategy on any level, you need to understand your company's external environment. In fact, your level of understanding can impact hiring, budgeting, marketing, or nearly any other part of the business world. Want to learn how to do all that? This course from GLOBIS Unlimited is the perfect first step!
Using Japanese Values to Thrive in Global Business
Japanese companies have unique cultural, communication, and operational challenges. But they also have values that have led to remarkable longevity. Check out this seminar to hear how these values help earn trust from overseas head offices and develop employees.
Marketing: Reaching Your Target
Every company works hard to get its products into the hands of customers. Are you doing everything you can to compete? In this course, you’ll find a winning formula to turn a product idea into real sales. Follow along through the fundamentals of the marketing mix and see how companies successfully bring products to market.
Basic Accounting: Financial Analysis
Want to compare your performance vs. a competitor? Or evaluate a potential vendor? Then you'll need to conduct a financial analysis. This course will teach you how to use three financial statements and evaluate financial performance in terms of profitability, efficiency, soundness, growth, and overall strength.
What drives you to be good at your job?
Career anchors are based on your values, desires, motivations, and abilities. They are the immovable parts of your professional self-image that guide you throughout your career journey.
Try this short GLOBIS Unlimited course to identify which of the eight career anchors is yours!
Leadership with Passion through Kokorozashi
The key ingredient to success? Passion.
Finding your kokorozashi will unify your passions and skills to create positive change in society. This GLOBIS Unlimited course will help you develop the values and lifelong goals you need to become a strong, passion-driven leader.
In the face of climate change, consumer priorities, and new definitions of ROI, there’s one word on every business leader’s mind: sustainability.
Actually, it’s often more than just that one word. “Sustainability” is a blanket term that can mean many things. When you say you want your product or service to be “sustainable,” it’s a bit like saying you want your diet to be “healthy.” And what does measuring sustainability in business actually look like? Your production will be scalable with minimal risk to the environment? You’ll achieve net zero carbon footprint? Your product will be 100% recyclable?
From investors to consumers, all of your stakeholders will want to know exactly what your company means when it says it’s practicing sustainability.
What is sustainability in business?
To start, it’s worth noting that the concept of sustainability stretches beyond the environment, encompassing societal and economic impact.
Some sources, including UCLA, claim that “Sustainable practices support ecological, human, and economic health and vitality.” Others, including McGill University and Investopedia, take it further. According to their definitions, sustainability means meeting our needs today without negatively impacting the needs of future generations.
Either way, to say your business is sustainable is a weighty claim. Accordingly, there are many criteria, frameworks, and business practices out there meant to guide sustainability. From the UN’s SDGs to the coveted carbonless footprint, here are five buzzwords every business leader today must understand in order to globalize, satisfy consumer expectations, and make a positive contribution in a changing world.
What are SDGs?
In 2015, the United Nations Member States aimed to both define parameters for sustainability as a concept and set goals for how to make that concept a reality. The result was seventeen Sustainable Development Goals, or SDGs. These have since been embraced by governments, corporations, independent projects, and other organizations as a guide map for the future—well, at least to 2030.
Seventeen may not sound like enough to cover the world’s problems, but the scope of SDGs is considerable. They include everything from world hunger (SDG 2) and clean water (SDG 6) to reduced inequalities (SDG 10) and peace (SDG 16).
Why Your Company Should Care about SDGs
While sustainability may be a common goal, every business has a unique position to take it on. The SDGs outlined by the UN can help your company find its niche for positive social impact—and be a part of something bigger.
But the clock is ticking—the UN’s ultimate goal is to move the needle on all seventeen SDGs by 2030.
What is ESG?
Another acronym common to sustainability messaging is ESG. ESG stands for environmental, social, and governance, and it’s used to define the three primary realms of sustainability efforts. Are you a steward of the environment? A driver of positive social impact? A champion of fair corporate governance?
In this era of climate change, political unrest, and gender inequality, businesses everywhere have a new appreciation for sustainable practices. In fact, many an organization is building ESG impact right into its business strategy.
Why Your Company Should Care about ESGs
The incorporation of ESGs into business practices, by some accounts, dates back as far as the 1960s, when investors started really paying attention to how companies operated ethically.
Nowadays, investors care a lot.
As sustainability-focused angel investor Patricia Bader-Johnston puts it, investors are increasingly drawn to ventures that pass the “look-around-the-corner” test, essentially making every aspect of their operations sustainable, not just the look of the final product. So regardless of how you might feel about certain political, social, or environmental issues, businesses need to prove they have a long-term vision and ethical standard. That can start with an ESG strategy.
What, exactly, is a carbon footprint?
Zero: the magic number in the age of climate change.
More specifically, a net zero carbon footprint is what everyone seems to want. Airlines offer optional fees to “offset” travelers’ carbon footprints. New data shows that video meetings can save 96% of their carbon footprints by turning off the camera.
But what does that mean? How can a video call have a footprint?
The “footprint” part of a carbon footprint is the impact of the actions—all the actions—you take, measured in greenhouse gasses (particularly CO2). Travel, for obvious reasons, is often considered one of the biggest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions. But even small actions can raise your carbon footprint.
The simple act of drinking a bottle of water from a vending machine, for example, folds you into the entire journey of that product. Machinery pulled the water from the ground; plastic was manufactured for the bottle and label; planes, ships, and/or trucks shipped the bottle to the vending machine; and the vending machine itself runs on electricity that kept the bottle cold. All of that—manufacturing, energy, shipping, storage—and more factors into your carbon footprint the moment you make your purchase.
For the record, the estimated carbon footprint of a single 500ml water bottle is 828g of carbon dioxide. And the global average carbon footprint per person is about 4 tons per year—except in the US, where the average is closer to 16 tons.
Why Your Company Should Care about Its Carbon Footprint
The bigger a company is, the bigger its carbon footprint will become—you’ll have more products and services, more suppliers, more supply chains, and more regions to cover. Your carbon footprint has a direct environmental impact. The unhealthier the planet, the shorter our collective future (that includes the future of your company).
Put another way, no one likes that guy at the party who eats all the cake and leaves a mess for the host or other guests to clean up. Consumers, too, are increasingly less keen on supporting organizations with blatant disregard for the mess they’re making (and leaving behind).
The future is one of collective responsibility, and that can easily start with reducing your carbon footprint.
What’s the difference between CSR and CSV?
CSR stands for corporate social responsibility, and that used to be the easy avenue for companies to show they cared. But nowadays, we’re hearing less about CSR and more about CSV—creating shared value.
How did that happen, and what’s the difference?
The Association for Corporate Citizenship Professionals says that “CSR truly began to take hold in the US in the 1970s, when the concept of the ‘social contract’ between business and society was declared by the Committee for Economic Development in 1971.”
The social contract comes from an understanding that businesses exist at the discretion of the public, and that means they have an obligation to create positive impact.
Eventually, around 2011, CSR lost its luster because companies started exploiting it for good PR. CEOs donated to children’s hospitals for clout; employees did beach cleanups at the prodding of HR. CSR activities weren’t integrated into strategies or business models.
CSV, however, aims to solve that issue by demanding measurable value that’s part of the company’s core activities, not just one-off, feel-good photo ops.
Why Your Company Should Embrace CSV
The social contract is real, and with social media, there’s truly nowhere left for corporations to hide. Consumers want to see business leaders out there doing good with their product or service. Investors want to see long-term scalability in a world shaped by those expectations. Employees want to take pride in the work they do.
It’s all about value—shared value.
What is greenwashing?
Greenwashing happens when a company’s sustainability efforts are all in its marketing, similar to how CSR is often all for good PR. You paint your logo green, talk about how lowering a carbon footprint is something everyone must do, and tout the value of the social contract.
But you don’t actually do anything to stop your negative impact.
Why Your Company Should Avoid Greenwashing
The danger of greenwashing is obvious. Like pinkwashing for LGBTQ+ issues and bluewashing for ethical practices, greenwashing is the worst way your company can “embrace” sustainability. And as we saw with the 2021 demonstration outside the COP26 Conference, consumers know it.
The opposite of greenwashing is green blushing—the act of actively hiding your business’s environmental efforts. There are a number of reasons a company might do this, but it’s not something you necessarily have to do to avoid greenwashing. Sustainability is something every business should be working towards, and your milestones are something you can be proud of. Just don’t let yourself fall into the trap of believing you’ve done enough with one or two trees planted.
Embrace the Benefits of Sustainability in Your Business
Sustainability is, by definition, an endless undertaking. While that scale can be overwhelming, business leaders are among the key stakeholders in our future.
The most important thing for your business is to understand how it does or can impact the world for the better, where it needs to improve, and how it can create shared value for society today, tomorrow, and beyond.