Are we really socially responsible and sustainable, or do we just want others to see us that way?

To begin with, I think it is important to define the very concept of sustainability and social responsibility and their differences since they are sometimes identified. Sustainability consists of 4 subgroups, and one of them is socially responsible business, with care for people, and the environment, but also looking at economic indicators.

Precisely for this reason, I believe that companies should work on a healthy basis and devote themselves to all segments so that ultimately the public image of the company itself would be positive. But what is actually happening here?

My own experience has shown me that you can only sell a product or service that you really believe in because when you present it to someone, the difference is truly visible. That is exactly why I was taken aback by the fact that a large number of companies on the Croatian market present themselves as companies that care about the community, that care about the environment and the people who work in that company, and when you scratch a little deeper under the surface, it is actually very clear that they are not even close to it. Companies that look like they care about their customers and consumers are actually the ones that don’t make any progress at all in business and business processes, even though they like to portray themselves that way in public.

The public image of the company – sometimes it seems that companies today are fighting only to be as positive as possible, without thinking about their own business and how to set a healthy base of sustainability. The fact is that the opinion of others is important to us because it can be reflected in all segments of our company – marketing, sales, finance, production… But why do we also try to create a public image of something that we are not?

The reasons for this are clear to us, but what I think is important is to find a solution. I believe that every company should if it is already presented as sustainable, really set goals and a strategy within the company that will create a strong base of sustainability. This alone will make the employees more satisfied, which will ensure their stay in the company for a longer period of time, and I don’t think it is necessary to mention how this creates savings for the company. That said, small daily steps like replacing plastic with glass or some other sustainable material should always be a priority for a company, because it’s not only a healthier option but also reduces costs. Also, efficiency and effectiveness will increase, which will create more profit for the company. We can see this best from statistics, as it has been scientifically proven that employees of companies that have gone through the digitization process have 30% higher productivity.

There are many ways to create a healthy base of sustainability for any business, the essential thing to start with is wanting to make a change and being ready to step into a better tomorrow. What we can see from the practice of other countries, at the level of Europe as well as the world, is the fact that companies that recognized this, saw through their operations that is returned to them many times over, and those companies that remained pretended and marketed a false image of themselves on the market – they failed.

It is for this reason that I invite all those who are business owners, as well as those who are in management positions, to stop, think about the goals and strategies of their company, and decide to change in a positive direction, a strong and healthy base, but also to dare to think about positive changes and benefits that sustainable business brings with it.