16 May Sustainable Supply Chains Are Good for Business
Jean Sweeney, the chief sustainability officer at 3M, recently outlined why sustainable supply chains are good for business. 3M is a manufacturing company that regularly donates goods to nonprofits through Good360. Recently, they’ve donated office supplies to veterans, safety gear to Flint, Michigan, and packaging tape to the Visiting Nurses Foundation. 3M understands the importance of sustainability and the circular economy, and now Sweeney has shared what makes sustainable supply chains so economically viable.
According to Sweeney, innovation and sustainability are complementary objectives. Establishing a better quality of life for people who develop products creates a more conducive environment for innovation. Initiative and “eureka” moments simply “don’t take place in desperate situations,” Sweeney noted. So, companies involved in the arenas of science and technology should work on improving their working environment in addition to their product, thereby encouraging ambition. Ultimately, this will boost reliability and revenue streams.
Sourcing your raw materials should be determined by a set of corporate values, as should your manufacturing operations. If you want to make sustainability a major goal, you should be able to measure your progress and find definitive methods of implementing change. Your business practices have impacts far beyond your own operations. As Sweeney stated, “By purchasing raw materials and services from small and large companies all over the world, you are participating in a global supply chain. If you are committed to aligning supplier expectations with your own corporate values, you will be better positioned to drive change and take advantage your manufacturing scale.”
By choosing suppliers that align with your values, you can expect candid reports from those suppliers about their environmental and social practices, so they can work alongside you to transform your supply chain when required. Minimizing your overall footprint should be your goal, and by collaborating with your suppliers you will drive growth by developing solutions together that benefit all parties involved. In a similar manner, Good360 facilitates collaboration between nonprofits and corporations to help communities in need and increase sustainability for businesses. Find out more here.