Sustainability in professional life


© SXC - Photo by omar francoReasons to change

A huge part of our lives is occurring at the workplace. Therefore, choices toward a sustainable lifestyle are not only something that is exclusively up to private life, but we also make many decisions in a professional environment that have, to some extent, an impact on global development. This is especially true for YMPs. They are very often in key positions in professional life - as advocates, consultants, and as high-level employees of big companies. In these high-level positions they either give advice to decision makers or they are responsible for company operational policies, with effects on a global scale. This is true not only for so-called multinational corporations, but also for smaller companies that work and sell only on a regional level. It is also true for public administrations, universities and research institutes, which are not only where many YMPs are working, but also places where many people working in general have not been reached by our message.


Some options for change that fit Young Modern Performers 

Fair procurement

© SXC by Jan Stastny


Not only private individuals but also companies and, as well, public administrations are consuming in the form of procuring supplies. YMPs can have influence on what products are used in the office - starting with fair trade coffee, continuing with recycling paper, and on to fair trade textiles for workers in the company.


Fair supply chain management

© SXC - Photo by Philippe Ramakers


Therefore, a lot of change is possible here from the inside. In companies that are producing, YMPs can also influence the supply chain management. Large companies especially have an influence on the working conditions of their suppliers. They can predominantly give contracts to those suppliers which are guaranteeing social standards in their own production. This way they can support suppliers who align with labor rights and avoid those who do not. Supply chain management decisions are made at all levels of companies.

Strengthening support for development education

Sustainable services and products

YMPs can also have a key role when it comes to what new services or products their company is developing and providing in the future. Will they be in line with sustainable development on a global scale or are they about to violate labor rights and standards of environmental protection.


How to put the message for Young Modern Performers?



Promoting equality in global markets

What YMPs can relate to is fairness as a value. It can be helpful to appeal to this value when addressing them in their working environment. A well-understood argument that we used was that exploitation of labor is not only unfair towards the workers in developing countries, but it is also unfair to those companies that try to provide decent working conditions for their workers because they can hardly compete with minimum wages and lowest production costs.

Therefore it is in our common interest to promote decent working conditions for all, so that fair chances are offered to every player on the field including those of us in developed countries.

© SXC - Photo by Stephen Stacey