The current climate of heightened uncertainty, resulting from the financial crises, the technological revolution, climate change, increased social inequality and mass migration, highlight the role of companies and their responsibility to become the drivers of change to regenerate the ecosystem. The latest challenges of the 21st century require companies to rethink their commercial and production models so they can make a positive impact in society and their environment. The challenge no longer lies in minimising their negative impact, but rather maximising their positive impact. Clearly, the time has come to act and adopt a proactive approach to restoring and revitalising ecosystems.
Reskill and navigate the changing labour market
Reskill to regenerate is a key factor when it comes to addressing these environmental, social and economic challenges. Firstly, it responds to the urgent need to adapt a workforce’s competencies and skills to the changing labour market. Secondly and more importantly, it requires leadership teams of directors and founders who will go beyond minimising their negative impact and place the criteria of sustainability, ethics and leadership at the core of their business activity and profitability, with the common purpose of making a positive impact in the world.
The concept of reskilling can be defined as the training, updating and adaptation of skills a professional undertakes to reposition themselves in the labour market in a different area of expertise to their current skill set. The labour market is undergoing unprecedented change. Traditional careers are disappearing and professions that were once considered stable are now being redefined. In such a fast-moving context, the value of successful companies and professionals are increasingly measured by what they can do rather than past experience. Leading recruitment organisations are leaving job descriptions behind in favour of creating and managing talent maps that adapt to future strategy and needs. These organisations have evolved the concept of product-market fit to product/people-market fit, putting people at the centre of their approach.
According to ‘The Future of Jobs Report 2020’ by the World Economic Forum, a billion professionals around the world need to update their skills before 2030. It also states that technology and energy transition will drive the creation of 69 million new jobs while 83 million positions are at risk of disappearing due to increasing automatization and persistent economic pressure. The Davos World Economic Forum also warns of a future labour market that will increasingly depend on continuous learning and the development of new skills. It is currently in the process of creating a global skills map to assess professionals more on what they can do rather than their current position, company, sector or previous experience. The Forum recommends all professionals to initiate a reskilling process every 3 to 5 years to avoid being left out of the job market or having access to fewer job opportunities.
Before initiating a process of professional reskilling, it is vital to consider in which direction to refocus your career or job and check there is demand in the labour market.
Regenerate: The essential role and responsibility of companies
The path towards a sustainable future starts with professionals and leaders who are willing to make a firm corporate commitment to making a positive impact. This goes beyond the Net Zero objective which has already been seen to be insufficient for the future social, environmental and economic challenges that lie ahead. Developing new skills, being able to guide teams towards responsible and conscious working practices, and taking strategic decisions that generate a positive impact in society and the environment are fundamental.
In light of this, it is no surprise that over the last few years the demand for professionals in the field of sustainability has increased dramatically. These profiles are called upon to play a key role in the sustainable transition in organisations as current global challenges show the need to redefine the current social and production model.
Towards sustainable regeneration
We understand regeneration as a call to action to create a positive impact in society, ensuring that our actions help to improve the health and wellbeing of the planet. Regeneration and more specifically sustainable regeneration is a broad concept that includes a range of definitions:
- Regeneration means to restore and revitalise ecosystems, allowing nature to recover its balance and prosperity.
- Regeneration involves adopting responsible and circular practices that restore natural resources and maintain their capacity for renewal.
- Regeneration is an opportunity to rethink consumption and production patterns, creating a future in which we give more than we take, and give back with care and respect.
- This concept also involves promoting social and economic equity, in the knowledge that our actions benefit communities and leave no-one behind.
- Regeneration is a path towards resilience, which enables us to adapt to environmental and social challenges with creative and sustainable solutions.
Regeneration is also a reminder that every small action counts. It shows the importance that not only business leaders but any professional from any field can make a difference, because individual change can have a positive impact on the wellbeing of the planet and help to create a better world, with less social injustice and a more equitable distribution of wealth. Ultimately, regeneration is an act of caring for our planet and ourselves, recognizing that we are part of an interconnected ecosystem that needs ongoing protection and regeneration.
Sustainability: a strategic pillar at EADA
Business schools play a fundamental role in promoting sustainability in the business world and driving change in organisations. EADA has placed sustainability at the core of its programme portfolio since 2017, alongside its strategic commitment to focus on developing a sustainable leadership model for participants, Alumni, client companies and organisations that covers the full spectrum of human sustainability in society, the environment, economy, ethics and equal opportunities.
With the launch of its Master in Sustainable Business & Innovation in 2017, the first programme to specialise in sustainability in Spain and the second in Europe, EADA began to place its focus on sustainable leadership and positive impact in society. Since then, EADA has expanded its portfolio of masters and postgraduate programmes in sustainability to its current 5 for professionals and senior managers. In addition, this sustainability approach, based on the triple bottom line of economy, society and environment, has been introduced transversally across almost all programmes at the school, achieving major international recognition. This is demonstrated by EADA’s position in the Positive Impact Rating (PIR), based on evaluations from our own students, in which EADA has been repeatedly recognised as one of the most transforming schools for the world as well as our compliance with the UN Global Compact and the Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME). Our MBA programme has also received international recognition for its focus on sustainability. The annual Better World Ranking MBA published by Corporate Knights ranks this programme among the top 20 in the world as a result of integrating sustainable development, faculty research in the field of sustainability and the gender and ethnic diversity of its faculty.
Over the last few years, this commitment has culminated in new alliances with the most relevant agents of systemic change such as Ashoka, B Lab and Barcelona +B. It has also led to the creation of the EADA Sustainability Hub, which is the centre that brings together all the research, training and activities that EADA carries out, or promotes in collaboration with its partners, to generate an impact in the field of sustainability, with 30 active studies currently led by 15 international academics.
Training, support and transformation lead to regeneration
EADA’s purpose is to support and train our professionals to be fully aware of the need for change and the ethical business responsibility they will undertake when making decisions in any role. Our institution firmly believes in the multiplier effect they can have in organisations and on those around them, giving them the opportunity to become change agents committed to creating a fairer and more sustainable world. EADA assumes this responsibility to train future leaders in the skills and competencies they need to bring about change and regeneration.
It is time to update skills, adapt and retrain. It is time to rethink processes and production and consumption patterns. It is time to change business strategies and move towards a more sustainable future by setting up alliances with partners that share the same purpose. It is time to become change agents and lead by example for future generations.