Saving the World at Work
Tim Sanders, approx. 230 pages, published by Crown Business (2008)
In this book Tim Sanders writes about “what companies and individuals can do to go beyond making a profit to making a difference”. In the first part of the book, Sanders talks about the most recent development towards a more sustainable economy which he calls “the responsibility revolution”. This term represents a process of change that is driven by a new consciousness amongst consumers, employees and investors. According to him, a business revolution can be divided into 5 stages, which reach from a change in circumstances, to severe disruptions of the market and the establishment of a new business order. Thus, companies in all sectors of the economy are demanded to act responsibly with regard to society, as well as to the environment. The author clearly states that those enterprises who do not follow up with this development, will not survive in the mid- or long-term.
The second part of the book provides practical advice on how individuals and companies as a whole can make the world a better place. For this purpose, he gives clear instructions and rules, which should be adhered to, reaching from rethinking your stakeholder relations to reducing your ecological footprint. Fundamental for his concept is the assumption that we have to link our personal goals with our business goals, in order to lead a purposeful life. That is also why he criticizes some companies for being too short-sighted.
“Saving the World at Work” is a well-structured book, which offers an informative overview of the recent developments and contains practical instructions that are supported by numerous examples and studies. The situation which Sanders described back in 2008 obviously has, however, evolved. In other words, in some industries, his outlooks have already become reality. Nonetheless his advice is still very valuable as we still find ourselves in the middle of a revolution, which will change the economic environment, permanently.
Although Sander’s book is directed to all levels of the hierarchy, Tripl3leader especially recommends it to leaders who want to gain a deeper understanding of the economic changes towards more social responsibility. Also, leaders will receive practical instructions on how to act and react concerning the given situation. Furthermore, the book generates awareness of what your subordinates can do and on how to approach your superiors regarding sustainability concerns. The author emphasizes that it is the possibility and the duty of every single one of us to get involved, or to put it in his very own words: “If not you, then who? If not now, then when?”