Out with Transparency: In with Transparent Brands

Mar 7, 2011 11:30 AM ET
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What Do You Stand For?

Last week the Sustainable Apparel Coalition – comprised of big brands such as Patagonia, Timberland and H&M – announced efforts to build a database of the environmental impacts along the apparel production supply chain. Eventually, the database will help ensure every garment sold has a consumer-facing sustainability score, clearly communicating impacts to the purchaser in a form they understand.

Companies in the coalition come from different points along the sustainability journey, yet each is willing to share operational challenges and collectively focus on issues that matter to the industry. Engagement with other companies, nonprofits and government organizations to realize shared solutions is a win for all involved. More importantly, it brings corporate operational challenges and innovations to consumers in a relevant and approachable way.

Although transparency can be scary for companies and most organizations are still in the nascent stages, building a transparent brand is the new path to better business and brand trust. Cone’s senior vice president, Jonathan Yohannan, shares his thoughts on what it means to be a transparent brand – including 10 essentials for building one – on our website.