The pandemic has drastically altered the power balance of the workforce. Where employers used to hold the cards, it’s now employees that are calling all the shots.
For decades, employees had to withstand uninspiring workspaces (think dull, grey office cubicles), ever-growing To Do lists, and toxic workplace cultures. But that landscape is changing. We’re seeing a wave of resistance from employees, who are demanding more from their employers than ever before. Organisations can no longer ignore employee wellbeing, and culture must be prioritised if businesses want to thrive in the modern workplace.
This has led to a new phenomenon: “quiet quitting.” A term used to describe workers who only do the job that they’re being paid to do. No extra responsibilities, no overtime, and certainly no extracurriculars. While this wave grew in popularity towards the end of 2022, it seems the turn of the new year has brought about yet another trend set to take the workplace by storm: climate quitting.
What is 'climate quitting?'
In short: employees are increasingly quitting their jobs to move to ‘greener’ organisations, with many even going as far as changing their careers to focus on tackling the climate crisis. What’s more, job seekers are now looking to work in companies that share similar values when it comes to the environment.
Employees are demanding environmental action
A recent report from Unily found that a massive 83% of workers thought their employer was not doing enough to tackle climate change. Perhaps more interestingly, 65% said they would be more likely to work for a company with robust environmental policies.
Further, a 2021 Yale School of Management survey of 2,000 students across 29 business schools around the world found that 51% would accept lower salaries to work for a company with better environmental practices.
"It's increasingly clear that being environmentally conscious is something employees are demanding of the organisations they work for."
What can businesses do to combat ‘climate quitting’ ?
It's increasingly clear that being environmentally conscious is something that employees are demanding of the organisations they work for. With customers also following suit, businesses can no longer afford to be blasé about the climate crisis.
1. Increase focus on ESG efforts
Focusing on improving and increasing ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) efforts is a no-brainer for businesses for many reasons. Including having benefits when it comes to the new ‘climate quitting’ phenomenon. Showing your people that you care about the planet will stop them looking elsewhere at businesses who are doing more.
2. Allow employees to volunteer
Give each employee a volunteer day to focus on giving back to an environmental cause or charity. Alternatively, you could arrange a beach clean up or litter picking event for everyone to get involved in.
3. Recruit for ‘green’ jobs
The LinkedIn Global Green Skills Report from 2022 shows that people are increasingly looking to work in green jobs. Your business can utilise this data to hire greener roles, and offer these out internally. From Sustainability Manager to Compliance Manager or Environmental Health & Safety Manager, there are various roles you could consider looking for if they don’t already exist within your company hierarchy.
4. Launch a new initiative
Launching a new environmentally focussed initiative is a key way to inspire and engage staff. The possibilities are endless. It could be a cycle to work scheme or a device recycling scheme. Perhaps you could even offer financial incentives to those who participate fully in the programmes. By having an organisational-wide environmental project for people to engage in, they’re less likely to look elsewhere at other businesses.
5. Partner with a charity
Partnering with an environmental charity shows staff how committed you are to these causes. There are endless environmental charities offering corporate partnerships; it’s about finding the right one for you. At Hable, we are proud to partner with World Land Trust to help fight climate change. You can read more about our work with them through our Hable Forest initiative here.
As the climate crisis worsens and individuals look to switch up their job roles for more environmentally conscious ones, it is the businesses that go above and beyond who will flourish. Being proactive at tackling the climate crisis is not just a moral duty for organisations anymore; it’s business critical.
How can Hable help?
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