I want my great, great, great grandchildren to be proud to say that they had an ancestor who worked for 3M. This will require two things: First, 3M will need to be still around in a hundred years or so. Second, it will still have to be a respected company that people are proud to be a part of.
So far, so good.
To me, this is the essence of sustainability at 3M. It is simply doing things in a way that is sustainable over the long term, either as a company or a global society. And it runs all the way through the company, from the policies set by executives to the everyday action by our people around the world.
In the United Kingdom, 3Mers are promoting healthier, safer and environmentally aware communities close to our sites. In Loughborough, a school’s garden has been transformed into a vibrant learning environment that students are maintaining for future classes. In Atherstone, we hope enhancements to a local waterpark will attract endangered birds to nest, and, in Bracknell, we’re helping the community reap the rewards of growing its own fruit and vegetables.
3M supports the Eco Tech Challenge, in which students recently designed garden materials or wildlife habitats made entirely from recycled materials. Student innovations included a “Strawberry Grower” with a built-in irrigation system and a “Living Bench,” a wooden seat, mini ecosystem and portable garden all in one.
Seeing what we’re already capable of and watching young minds at work shaping the future, it’s easy to be optimistic about the world those great, great, great grandchildren of mine will inherit.