Over the past months, my GreenBiz colleagues have repeatedly reported on a heating sustainability job market and the steps companies can take to attract and retain top ESG talent. I’m obviously part of the corporate social responsibility fan club and celebrate those wins. But I find this praise of the Great Resignation’s benefits too narrow when mixed into this flurry of positive headlines about empowered staff are many about appalling conditions lower-income workers face.
On the one hand, companies outcompete each other over the best people to run their sustainability programs by offering them better working conditions and the chance to implement progressive climate and DEI commitments. On the other, they fight their “blue-collar” workers over every penny and sick day.
How does that fit together? And will the groomed and growing sustainability squads eventually lift up less privileged workers?