Johan Reiman on Creating Shared Value

How can you support society and strengthen business simultaneously? Johan Reiman, Director of Corporate Responsibility at Volvo Group, describes the concept of Creating Shared Value as a way to combine the two. “Creating Shared Value is a business philosophy designed to solve social issues profitably. It sees corporate responsibility activities as an opportunity to strengthen and develop both business and society.”

Why is Creating Shared Value important to Volvo Group?

“In order to be a good corporate citizen, we want to be present and engaged in the communities in which we operate. It’s important to understand these societies’ specific challenges.”

Give me an example of how Volvo Group works with Creating Shared Value.

“One good example is our Vocational School program, which educates mechanics and commercial drivers in countries with skills shortages in those areas. We run these projects alongside the international development organizations USAID, SIDA and UNIDO.”

How is that an example of Creating Shared Value?

“Lack of trained and skilled mechanics that can service and repair our customers’ products as well as shortage of trained and skilled drivers are business obstacles in many parts of the world. We saw that if we engaged in projects where we support the school system and thereby provide a market building long-term capacity for these trades, we would not only strengthen our business, but also support these societies. That is Creating Shared Value at its core.”

How does it feel to work at a company engaged in this kind of activity?

“It makes me proud to work for a forward-leaning company, thinking of new ways to support both society and business.”


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