This past year has been challenging and many businesses and organizations have had to pivot their business models in order to serve clients and earn revenues.  It is times like these that force us to evaluate and challenge our business model and practices, leading us to growth.  As a leader of a not-for–profit organization, this has been a time that has forced us to look beyond who we are today, but seek what we require in future to become resilient, thriving while continuing to be purpose driven.  We are asking ourselves how we diversify revenue streams, scale our organization, serve our community and create a thriving nonprofit who is independent and self-sustainable?

Euromonitor International reveals the top trends that will define consumer behavior and influence business strategies this year in a new report, “Top 10 Global Consumer Trends 2021.” The COVID-19 pandemic created, influenced or accelerated each trend in the report.  In 2021, the #1 trend is that consumers will expect purpose-driven initiatives that support the triple bottom line—people, planet and profits (Build Back Better). Nearly 70% of professionals expect consumers to be more concerned about sustainability than before COVID-19.

In today’s economic environment, business success is no longer defined by only monetary gain but also by the affect it has on people and the planet.  Referred to as triple bottom line or social impact, businesses seek to gauge an organization’s level of commitment to corporate social responsibility and its impact on the environment over time.

Leaders, both business and community, need to challenge their current status quo and begin to shift mindsets to how we can find solutions for a better tomorrow that include people, planet and profit – the “three P’s”.  As a community lender, we have been exploring social investment, impact investing, social enterprise and social purpose organizations; and, how as a community economic development agency do we support purpose driven initiatives in our region.

In our complex and ever evolving world, I believe that many of us are becoming more engaged in what our business impact is in our community, the environment and how we conduct ourselves both here and abroad.  More people are thinking about sustainability and the three P’s.  Community governments are exploring concepts such as the circular and donut economies.   It would seem that many of us are thinking that we can and should do more but the expectations of consumers may very well shift us from thinking to doing.

Jolynn Green is Executive Director of Community Futures Central Island. You can count on us for sound practical advice, personalized business coaching and tailored financing that supports your business goals. Jolynn can be reached at or 250-591-7499.