Today nearly all of the world’s largest companies are investing significant resources in sustainability programs, but this hard work isn’t resonating with many employees.  

Sustainability talk has become so ubiquitous that it has blended into background noise, with employees experiencing “green fatigue,” becoming disengaged and skeptical of big promises. New research from WE Communications finds that despite well-intentioned efforts by employers, 45% of employees suspect that the companies they work for are involved in some level of greenwashing. 

The good news is that employees support sustainability goals and have an active interest in them. They will forgive imperfection, so long as they can see evidence of authentic progress.  

WE Communications surveyed nearly 2,000 employees from a range of industries across the United States, United Kingdom and Singapore to gain a regional view on their attitudes toward corporate sustainability programs. This research provides actionable insights to help employers make their efforts real.

What WE Found

  • Although 78% of employees are interested in working in sustainability, almost 2 out of 3 say they have little to no involvement in their employers’ environmental sustainability efforts. 
  • Lack of clarity in corporate sustainability commitments presents real risk — 45% of employees believe their company is participating in some level of greenwashing.
  • And only 38% say that the companies they work for have made sustainability commitments.  
  • Still, these employees are optimistic and realistic; 3 out of 4 would understand if their company missed their sustainability targets. But they want to see a clear plan moving forward.  
  • Communications matters: Validation from external organizations is the No. 1 factor that improves employee opinion of sustainability initiatives. 


Woman smiling and holding tablet


Get specific and make it real  

Employees want to see concrete evidence of your sustainability progress.

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Don’t fear the deadlines   

It’s okay to fall short of your promises, just prove your progress.

People picking rubbish at beach


Get everyone involved 

Employees want to be part of your sustainability goals.


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