The following article is a guest post by members of The Container Store’s team.
What if everyone associated with a business could thrive?
For all of us at The Container Store, it’s not just a question. It’s what we strive to achieve in all that we do for each of our stakeholders – our employees, customers, vendors, the community, our shareholders and the environment. Our company is among a growing number of employers who run their businesses according to the tenets of Conscious Capitalism – a way of thinking about capitalism that better reflects the innate potential of business to make a positive impact on the world.
What is a Conscious Business?
Conscious businesses have a higher purpose – a reason for existing beyond just making a profit. They improve the world and serve a greater good. At The Container Store, we know that by giving our customers the gift of organization, we’re giving them more time back in their day and a better quality of life. It’s inspiring to our employees to know that each time they help a customer, they’re making the world a better place!
Conscious businesses are led by servant leaders who are more concerned about the collective good and success of everyone at their company than their own personal gain. Conscious businesses also have conscious cultures that are trusting, authentic, innovative and caring – employees feel that working at a conscious company is not only professionally fulfilling, but that it truly makes them a better person! We’re always astonished when our employees say that not only do they love working at The Container Store, but the experience has made them a better parent, spouse, friend, neighbor, etc.
Finally, conscious businesses work to serve the interests of all of the stakeholders in their business simultaneously. Rather than myopically focus on the needs of the shareholder (as many companies do), conscious businesses try to create win-win situations for all.
The Economic Value of Sustainable Practices
We believe that there’s no conflict between economic prosperity and environmental stewardship. In fact, the two are actually mutually dependent upon each other. Like many other retail companies, we embrace sustainability as a key to our economic future, and consider the environment one of our key stakeholders. We know businesses that embrace sustainability will be more efficient, have lower costs, be less reliant on scarce commodities and escalating prices, increase their use of sustainable and recycled materials, have a better relationship with all of their stakeholders and ultimately, be able to offer the best quality products at the lowest possible prices. Our commitment to sustainability includes a recycling program, the use of high-efficiency HVAC and lighting systems throughout our company, the use of rail transportation instead of trucks to reduce our carbon footprint and much, much more.
Another great example of a win-win situation for multiple stakeholders is our current partnership with Goodwill Industries during our Kiss Clutter Goodbye campaign from now through May 15. In an effort to help our customers de-clutter their lives, we’re inviting them to clear out items in their homes that they don’t need anymore and bring them to our stores, where we’ll collect them for Goodwill. To learn more about our partnership and where you can donate, visit The Container Store’s blog at www.whatwestandfor.com/communities.