I have received two thank-you emails from students who attended our San Francisco roundtable discussion after the talk I gave for design professionals at the San Francisco Mart last week (see prior post). It was delightful to hear from them!
One of them wrote a longer message, asking me if I thought any new jobs would emerge over the next few years. I replied that taking sustainability seriously was going to require positions and expertise that do not exist now in our industry. This could happen quickly—perhaps within the next two years—if the industry makes agreeing on standards and practices for green sourcing, manufacturing and packaging a priority.
The interest in environmentalism is really picking up steam with consumers and the trade. The Sustainable Furniture Council that was recently formed in High Point this October is just one more confirmation that the eco-trend is becoming both widespread and mainstream. In one of The Trend Curve’s newest products, a CD-ROM entitled Nine New Trends: A Vision For The Future (this is the text and images of my seminar at the October, 2006 High Point International Furniture Market), I focused on the sustainability trend in a big way.
Lots of people want to lend a hand and make a difference that will help our planet. Doing so so has the power to impact the home furnishings industry in so many positive ways. Yes, new jobs are a part of this. But there will also be healthier working environments, less waste and a great PR story that resonates with consumers.