A recent Bloomberg report reports a growing trend of “climate quitting“, or switching one’s regular job to a more environmentally responsible one.
Making a difference
This about the notion of leaving a job or rejecting an offer of one because you think the employer’s environmental, social, and governance (ESG) commitments don’t align with your own. It’s a slow burn trend that’s been evolving for years. We’ve been seeing it in career counselling for a long time; there’s always been a steady trickle of job seekers who want to make a meaningful career choice that really makes a difference on a broader scale.
It’s not just climate, these are people who, whether they work for a business or buy from it, want to know that it makes socially responsible commitments. These are people want jobs that provide them meaningful work which resonates with their personal values.
A survey by KPMG survey found that nearly half of 6,000 respondents wanted their employer to have an ESG commitment. One in five turned down a job offer because they felt this wasn’t the case. An earlier survey by Censuswide, on behalf of Arriva, found that a majority of UK adults would consider leaving their job in order to pursue a role they perceive as “greener”.
Given the news coverage of climate issues it’s obvious that many employees, perhaps especially younger workers, who will see the greater impacts of climate change, are taking socially responsible policies into account when choosing who they will work for.
The current job market, and rising salaries, work in favour of good applicants who can pick and choose employers with good ESG track records. By 2025, 75 per cent of the working population will be millennials, so organisations will need credible plans and policies in place to address ESG if they want to source and retain applicants from this talent pool.
When someone is looking for a new role they will have a variety of reasons and requirements, but it seems there is an increasing requirement for employers to have a stronger environmental record. Many workers want to align their personal sustainability aspirations and career ambitions, and this highlights the importance of sharing socio-environmental values with prospective employers.
As employers we need holistic and creative initiatives to create realistic, sustainable solutions that address hiring challenges and employee engagement issues.
There’s a growing awareness of the need to tackle the pressing problems of climate change and environmental destruction, and a sense of personal responsibility in society that employers need to take on board and address.
Employers who can work towards building a talent community that will enable them to achieve their shared environmental goals will have a distinct advantage in the recruitment market. Go green!