It’s January, which means every business person with a pen is making their predictions for the business trends that will shape the year ahead. We’ve précised a few prophecies that suggest sustainability will climb even further up the boardroom agenda in 2019 and beyond.
1. Increased demand for CSR
In an interview with Travel Trade Weekly, Peter Kerkar, Group CEO of Cox & Kings, predicts: “The new year will see a spurt in the number of responsible travellers demanding for sensitive travel packages as well as sustainable operators to ensure a guilt-free tour. However, the good part is that there are organisations and operators that have highest regards for sustainability. They will take the centre-stage in 2019.”
He also suggests “over-tourism” will drive travellers to seek out off-peak experiences: “These factors have started influencing the travellers’ decision. It is non-desirable to get stuck in long queues or crowded streets on a leisure trip.”
2. Prioritise impact
Denise Naguib, VP of Sustainability and Supplier Diversity, Marriott International, told Hotel News Now that CSR needs to take business impacts into consideration over philanthropy:
“We always want to ensure that sustainability initiatives are enhancing the guest experience, supporting our hotels and ownership groups, and in line with what our associates, stakeholders, communities and the environment need.
“The concept of over-tourism seems to be becoming more mainstream and is no longer just a sustainability buzzword. As the tourism industry continues to grow, it will be more important than ever that we work to maintain the ecological health of the destinations in which we operate.”
3. Corporations must comply
Sarwant Singh warns in his article for Forbes: “Political will and public pressure will elicit shifts in policy and regulations, even as they disrupt industries which continue with unsustainable operations.”
Similarly, Patsy Doerr, Global Head of Corporate Responsibility and Inclusion at Thomson Reuters, says: “It will no longer be a choice for companies to embed social impact into their business and brand strategies – it will be required to thrive and compete for talent, customers and investors.” Read the full article at Forbes.
Finally, Entrepreneur magazine warns socially irresponsible firms will struggle, stating: “In 2019, and into the future, expect social responsibility to be the table stakes of business”.
Are you forward-thinking, but not sure what steps to take?
If you would like help to shape a CSR initiative with impact, or you’re struggling with a sustainability strategy, then I’d love to hear from you. Drop me an email and find out more about how The Travel Foundation works with businesses.