Since the industrial revolution corporations have been fine-tuning their money-making machines by cutting costs by any means necessary. Because the affects of the environment and local economies were not drastic and instant the corporations did not care and the consumers were not aware of the negatives that follow. Now there is a shift. Consumers have been educated, consumers have more freedom with more options with their spending, consumers want to feel that they are supporting corporations that are good, and not “less bad”. The Responsible revolution is here.
This topic is seen almost daily in our media with corporations being exposed for cutting corners. Friends share their views on why they use a certain brand of laundry detergent over another, or why they bought a certain pair of jeans. It is no longer just about giving meaning to spending habits, it’s becoming increasingly important about who you work for.
Good Earth Coffeehouse has the intention to align all of their values with being environmentally and socially responsible. Since 1991 Nan Eskenazi has been leading the responsible revolution for her coffee houses. “We observe everything we do from start to finish and understand the environmental and social impact before proceeding with an idea.” Her coffee shops have multiplied with their coffee franchise model with 40 locations throughout BC, Alberta and Saskatoon, and another 6 to 8 scheduled to open in 2014.
Each Good Earth location is powered by 100% green energy; from Bullfrog Power; they use the latest in compostable coffee cups, are strongly involved with and support community events, work with and donate to Habitat for Humanity and also are working on a direct trade relationship with their coffee farmers to establish more sustainable relationships.
“By having all values align, it is easier for us to find like minded staff. We are all on the same page, we believe in our values, in a much stronger way than just serving our customers.” Says Eskenazi. According to a survey conducted by Hewitt Associates it is easy to understand why the staff at Good Earth are happier with their job. The survey found that the higher the overall level of corporate responsibility, the more your staff will: consistently say positive things about your organization, intend to stay with your organization, strive to achieve above and beyond what is expected in their daily role. Hewitt’s study concluded that employees in general value their employer’s corporate responsibility efforts – to the extent that if the employer were to scale back on its social responsibility or environmental initiatives, it could negatively impact employee motivation and possibly even retention. “Our value’s resonate with our staff, customers, franchise partners, and everyone at head office. This gives us all a powerful connection between one another and a greater appreciation of what we do each day.” Nan states.
Good Earth Coffeehouses are attracting plenty of attention with their responsible efforts with more loyal customers and more people wanting to join their team. Eskenazi says that they will be looking to expand into the Ontario market with their coffee franchise opportunity shortly and do not plan to stop their growth while keeping all aspects of their company consistent with their good intentions.