Change Is A Team Sport

Adidas

3. Good Health and Well-Being 4. Quality Education 5. Gender Equality 8. Decent Work and Economic Growth 17. Partnerships for the Goals

Overview

In April of 2020, Adidas launched its Sustainability Campaign. The strategy is deeply rooted in the core conviction of the company. They understand that they have the ability to transform lives through sports, the plan transforms the company's continuous efforts into concrete targets and measurable objectives.


Authors

Tamesha Alexander

Tamesha Alexander

Louis Gregorio

Louis Gregorio

School

St. John's University

St. John's University

Professor

Charles Wankel

Charles Wankel

Innovation

Adidas is one of the few billion dollar corporations that want to have a positive impact on the environment, the company is constantly thinking of ways to reduce their carbon footprint. Adidas has also committed to gradually increasing the use of more sustainable fabrics, and plans to make 100% of their cotton meet the requirements set by the Better Cotton Initiative. They are also partially accredited by Bluesign, who supports the removal of dangerous chemicals from the textile industry, textile workers' health and responsible resource use.

Supporting Women In Sports has always been a high point for Adidas, they are aligned with multiple partnerships that are dedicated to gender equality. Their most recent women in sports campaign was directed to multiple video advertisements set to be released.

The word “Team” is used often in Adidas culture. Their managers are called team leads and the staff is referred to as the team. Collaborating is an essential part of a successful team which is why the brand promotes this kind of culture. Over the years Adidas has implemented 3d and 4d technology into their footwear. Instead of high capital of doing this in house, it was outsourced to a company called Carbon, a 4d printing company. In the recent outbreak of Covid-19 Adidas was seen collaborating with them once again. However, this time it wasn't for sneakers. It was to manufacture face shields for those on the front lines in our healthcare system. The collaboration allowed for rapid production in order to get in the hands of nurses and doctors with quickness. This is just one example of how Adidas has used partnerships to complete goals and benefit the community.

Change Is A Team Sport

Inspiration

When starting our interview with Mayra, we went over the UN Global Goals. We concurred that Adidas is certainly for the people and is proactive with helping towards a majority of these goals. Gender equality was one that stood out to her. As a Manager at Adidas she has first hand experience with this. She mentioned the “#20PercentCounts” campaign. This campaign was designed to bring awareness and challenge other companies to end the gender pay gap. The employees wore shirts and name tags depicting the slogan. It was her duty to receive the information from Human Resources and relay it to her team. Not only that, but keep the team motivated enough to spread awareness. Mayras inspiration comes from her personal experience with her family. “I am the oldest of 6 kids, 5 girls and one boy. If I can help spread awareness and bring gender equality issues to the forefront, then I feel like I have made a difference for women like my sisters, and my sisters themselves.” She added that these awareness campaigns have led into the company holding events for women to “come together to exercise and be creative.”

Overall impact

Per Adidas' matra “The ultimate goal is to have a product that delivers high performance, but which is also made in a sustainable way (Adidas).” They deem innovation as the key to the success of all their products. They are very selective about how they make their products and who they get to make their merchandise. All materials used are held to the expectation of impacting the environment in a certain way. Whenever they see a chance to take a better step in a global direction they choose the correct path. It’s as simple as the saying “If you knew better, you’d do better” all of the morals and principles that the brand stands for goes back to that.

For instance, if we look at the current global pandemic surrounding COVID-19, Adidas has offered up their assistance by printing face shields for healthcare workers. The nature of the company is to give back, a billion-dollar corporation that consistently gives back to the world that made it successful.


Business benefit

Adidas offers fair compensation for all of its workers; the wage may vary depending on location but the benefits and morality they stand on do not. Their job goes beyond just creating merchandise for apparel. They are continuously supporting various causes and invested in new opportunities to better the economy.

Their most recent women in sports campaign was directed to multiple video advertisements set to be released. The subject was a young girl who was looking for validation. When asked about the message behind these videos, Nicole Vollebregt, SVP of Global Purpose for Adidas, said, “We believe she needs to see strong female role models to inspire her to pursue her dreams. As part of our continued efforts to increase visibility for women and girls in sports, we have committed to ensuring that we will have equal gender representation across our owned social channels. This is the first step in changing how we will approach content creation in the future.”

The campaign led into another one. This time it was called “Reimagine Sport.” Adidas released an entirely new product line for women. The clothing was designed for all women, no matter the body type. This was done to ensure that no women felt excluded when shopping in a sports apparel store. The new product was sold in existing stores and helped generate even more revenue for the company since it targeted new markets. Since the line was successful we can definitely see Adidas adding more to it and collaborating with other brands on it. Not only did it generate revenue, but more importantly it helped those who would normally feel excluded find their comfort zone. It was great for public relations.

Social and environmental benefit

For over five years now, Adidas has held a partnership with Parley for the Oceans to produce a wide range of products that are made from recycled waste that has come to sea. Their most famous is their Ultra Boost trainers. They pride themselves on being able to say that the trainers are made out of 100% recycled materials. Ultimately they are trying to reduce their waste production, energy consumption, and water use by at least 20%. Understanding the environmental impact that these factories have on the world and taking action is a step in the right direction. Adidas is actually a founding member of the Better Cotton Initiative and the Sustainable Apparel Coalition. Them offering consistent wages for their employees goes a long way as well. They are also working with the Leather Working Group to help support animal welfare.

“We want to inspire and nurture role model leadership.” Adidas is all for furthering the education of not only their employees but also those in local communities. As a student their are many ways to further your education within Adidas. These include: Apprenticeships, Global Trainee Programs, Internships and more. Internally, employees have access to learn a second language for free, workshops on the Adidas Portland campus, and access to free Linkedin learning courses. To top that, they also offer education payment relief to their full time employees. As far as education in the community, Adidas has contributed in many ways. One example would be their football instruction program (Daily Football) which launched on television in China. This segment consists of step by step instructions on how to play the game of football.

Interview

Mayra Hernandez, Store Manager

Photo of interviewee

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Adidas

Adidas

Herziaura, Herzogenaurach, DE

Business Website: https://www.adidas.com/us

Year Founded: 1949

Number of Employees: 10000+

Adidas AG is now the 2nd largest producer of sportswear and sports gear in the world. The company is active in Europe, the Americas and Asia. They are innovation and design leaders who seek to help athletes of all skill levels achieve peak performance with every product we bring to the market.