Purpose is trending in the business world, especially among brands that are looking beyond the next quarter and trying to figure out how to thrive in the middle and long run. Purpose, of course, is a natural ally of sustainability – on a personal level, on an organizational level, as well as on a societal level. One can easily argue purpose is even a key subset of sustainability, a must-have component for true future flourishing. Here I present what I see as 7 critical trends at the intersection of sustainability and purpose that are already having a big impact on the global business community.

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“While awareness and valuation of sustainable practices continues to grow overall, investors are demanding more data, better data, and deepening engagement with their investment prospects. The landscape of investor attitudes and actions around purpose and sustainability continues to be too wide and scattered for comfort, with important points of disconnect between corporate and investor perceptions and intentions. More work is needed to satisfy investors’ data demands, resolve existing communication breakdowns, equip CFOs and Investor Relations functions with ways to navigate complex, emergent stakeholder dynamics, and distinguish activist investor actions from other types of investor attention.”