The actions of large companies affect sustainable behaviour
Updated: Apr 11
Airlines want to operate unnecessary flights to maintain their take-off and landing rights (The Bulletin, 2022). Not sustainable at all, of course. This gives people the feeling that their own sustainable behaviour has little impact. As a result, their motivation to make sustainable choices decreases. It is therefore important that large organizations show their commitment to sustainability, in their words as well as in their actions.
But large organizations are ofter afraid to communicate about that they (want to) do in the field of sustainability. On the one hand, because they think that this will make them vulnerable to criticism. On the other hand, because they think as a result people will no longer take responsibility for their own sustainable behaviour.
This fear is partly understandable. Indeed, people automatically consider organizations that communicate about their plans and actions on sustainability as more responsible for this. But at the same time, people's attitude towards the organization also becomes more positive. Both in terms of sustainability and in general. So, nothing to worry about so far.
And how do you ensure that people continue to take responsibility for their own sustainable behaviour as well? The trick is to show them that as an organization, you do a lot. But to also be very clear about which (small) actions you need from them to achieve your goals on sustainability. This gives people the feeling that they can make a large impact with a little effort. This motives them to make more sustainable choices.
So: plans and actions of organizations have a major influence on sustainable behaviour of consumers. If organizations are clear about how they (want to) commit themselves to sustainability, people are more positive about the organization, and it motivates them to make more sustainable choices themselves.