Sustainable Business Expert, Environmental Advocate, Activist and Co-Founder of Seventh Generation
Jeffrey Hollender is co-founder and former CEO of Seventh Generation, which he built into a leading natural product brand of household and personal care products from 1988 to 2010. Seventh Generation’s line of over 100 products is distributed in most leading retailers including: Target, Whole Foods, Kroger, Safeway and Amazon.
Hollender is currently the founder and CEO of Hollender Sustainable Brands, a consumer products company that develops and markets Sustain reproductive healthcare products. He is also Adjunct Professor of sustainability and social entrepreneurship at New York University and serves on the Kimberly-Clark and the Morgan Stanley Sustainability Advisory Boards.
As an author, speaker and consultant Hollender is a leading authority on corporate responsibility, sustainability, social equity, global health care, and population issues. Hollender is the author of seven books focused on corporate responsibility and sustainability including, The Responsibility Revolution: How the Next Generation of Businesses Will Win. His most recent book, Planet Home: Conscious Choices for Cleaning & Greening the World You Care About Most, guides consumers through the dizzying array of environmental decisions they make each day, helping them understand which choices matter most.
Hollender’s first business ventures were in the field of education and publishing: the Skills Exchange in Toronto and Network for Learning in New York City. In 1985, after selling Network for Learning to Warner Publishing, a division of Warner Communications (now Time Warner), he was appointed president of the renamed firm, Warner Audio Publishing. In 1988, he acquired Renew America, a mail order catalog of green products, which eventually became Seventh Generation.
Hollender is the co-founder and co-chair of the American Sustainable Business Council, a coalition of 200,000 business leaders committed to corporate responsibility. He also serves on the board of Greenpeace US and Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility. He divides his time between Charlotte, VT, and New York City.
The Business Case for Sustainability & Corporate Responsibility
This keynote speech by Jeffrey Hollender will explore why the next generation of Sustainability & Corporate Responsibility are increasingly the best business strategies for success. On a planet with limited resources, increasing competition for talent, rules and regulations that increase the cost of doing business for organizations that cause adverse impacts to the environment and the increased transparency that results from social media – business must peruse news strategies. Find out how the latest Sustainability & Corporate Responsibility strategies minimize waste, build consumer loyalty, attract the best talent, increase access to capital, drives innovation and collaboration and maximizes shareholder value.
Doing good better: Creating a better future
Business generally denies the most significant challenges we face. Global climate change & social inequity will create (with increasing frequency) huge disruptions for business. We seem unable to respond effectively to these challenges despite overwhelming evidence of the risks they pose. Business must move beyond its incremental approach to addressing the world’s problems. Revolutionary changes are critical. Business must combine a moral imperative that values social wellbeing and the common good while it persues financial success. We have confused “good” with less bad. Most “green” responsible products are at best “less bad.” Business must focus its innovation on “good” regenerative products and services. We typically approach challenges in a compartmentalized rather than system manner. A compartmentalized approach by definition creates a host of unintended consequences and almost never addresses the root cause of a problem. In the future we must build systems thinking into every aspect of business, education and programs designed to support all social services.
The Journey to Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability
This keynote speech by Jeffrey Hollender will explore the personal journey that first led Jeffrey to commit his business careers to using business as a force of social and environmental good. Their story will highlight how the values that first emerged almost three decades ago are evolving to address the challenges and opportunities we face today and in the coming decade.
Nothing To Hide: The Power of Transparency in the Age of Social Media
Our society and the planet desperately need business to accelerate its transition toward a “responsibility revolution.” In this age of social media the revolution is both more possible and more essential than ever before for the success and survival of corporate America. Every day, social media exposes the true nature of modern brands, and the more we see, the less we find to like. The age of messages neatly packaged by a marketing department is over. Today your brand lives in the hearts, minds and facebook messages of your customers. This interactive dialogue will share stories and examples of best practices as well as cover: • Creating Context: Is there really a responsibility revolution? • Social Media Trends • Trends in “being good” online • What does this mean for your business or brand? • What does it take to succeed in this new world?
The Future of Business
Will it revive or destroy our economy? Big business has evolved over the last 40 years from an engine of growth and prosperity to a wealth concentrating and environment destroying force that writes it’s own rules and will do almost anything to ensure it’s survival. Can we recapture the potential of business to create a sustainable and equitable future.
All Jeffrey Hollender Books
Planet Home: Conscious Choices for Cleaning and Greening the World You Care About MostPurchase Book
The Responsibility Revolution: How the Next Generation of Businesses Will WinPurchase Book
What Matters Most: How a Small Group of Pioneers Is Teaching Social Responsibility to Big Business, and Why Big Business Is ListeningPurchase Book
Naturally Clean: The Seventh Generation Guide to Safe & Healthy, Non-Toxic CleaningPurchase Book
How to Make the World a Better Place: 116 Ways You Can Make a DifferencePurchase Book
“Jeffrey is that all to rare visionary in possession of both the relentless will and profound intellect needed to truly realize large-scale social change. His tremendous success in combining a profitable bottom line with his deep belief in the positive role business can play in building a better world speaks for itself. His relentless passion, transparency, dedication, and constantly evolving thinking serve as great exemplars of what a true social entrepreneur is, and what he or she can accomplish. The world needs more people who think and act as he does.”
- Director | Catherine B. Reynolds Foundation Program in Social Entrepreneurship
“Jeffrey is one of the most passionate, incisive, provocative, and thought-provoking business leaders I’ve come across in my years as a business journalist. When he speaks to a crowd—particularly about sustainability and capitalism–you can feel the room being refreshed by someone willing to be so candid and politically incorrect in the most productive way possible.”
- Senior Writer | Fast Company
“Students in my MBA classes at Columbia Business School and at Oxford University’s Said School of Business found Jeffrey to be one of the most compelling speakers among the host of “star entrepreneurs” we had during the courses. In particular, they appreciated his willingness to talk honestly about the challenges – and the rewards – of starting and growing a business. They also fully welcomed that Jeffrey engaged with them as future business leaders who will be grappling with some of the practices and systems in the financial world that compromise companies’ ability to incorporate fully environmental and social obligations that any company must fulfill in today’s world.”
- Director | Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship at the Said Business School
“Jeffrey Hollender has been one of the true visionaries in American business overt the past quarter century. More importantly he has walked the talk and built a business that has had wide-spread influence throughout the consumer goods industry. Jeffrey is extremely engaging and sincere as a speaker, and most importantly has a message that truly matters.”
- Director | Center for Organizational Learning at the MIT Sloan School of Management