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Understanding the Value of Nike’s Impact Report

NIKE, Inc. has released its Impact Reports for two decades, shifting to an annual cadence three years ago. The reports are evidence that hard work matters. Each report details the work of NIKE, Inc.’s teams. As our 11th edition, this report affirms the belief that redefining human potential is possible.

In many ways, NIKE, Inc.’s Impact Reports chart the company’s transformation. Part of the importance of being transparent about corporate governance is taking on the obligation for sharing the complexity of change. Embracing this responsibility can serve as a catalyst within a business, and in all its associated industries.

The NIKE, Inc. FY20 Impact Report represents an inflection point. It addresses and assesses NIKE, Inc.’s 2020 targets, which were set in 2015, and sets new corporate targets for 2025. The report serves to imbue trust and communicate the company’s journey with competency and compassion. 

With that in mind, Virginia Rustique-Petteni, VP, Purpose Communications, NIKE, Inc., breaks down the value of this type of reporting and translating the resulting commitments into action. 

Committed to Transparency

We believe that sport can move the world forward and that progress toward a better tomorrow is possible. That’s not just an aspiration, it’s our call to action. Publishing an annual report provides an inside look to the work — how we invest our resources to drive impact, and whether or not we’re on track with our commitments. Year after year, we provide transparency to where we’re gaining and where more traction is needed. This is important for us internally, allowing employees to have an understanding of where we’re headed. And it's just as important to share our journey externally, so others learn with us and join us. We know progress over perfection is valued by consumers and employees, and reporting against our targets holds us accountable to action.

Committed to Serving Athletes

At Nike, purpose guides us. We’re values-led and always have been. We exist to serve athletes, and in serving them, we listen for what they care about. Athletes are using their respective platforms for change. We have seen how inspirational that can be, and we must do the same.

Committed to Breaking Barriers 

A multitude of teams across many functions in the enterprise developed our 29 targets. We pressure-test plans and chart the path to success, which is hard work. Our focus is not on a headline, or a big number for the sake of it. We obsess, with an athlete mindset, how best to gain ground. There's no doubt that the topics within our reports are complex. We understand that each area is interconnected — when we address one, we significantly progress another. 

Committed to Collective Action

Meeting our Purpose targets requires us to work as one team inside Nike, and to partner externally with organizations — in our industry, among governments and NGOs, and other sector leaders — who want to be drivers of change. We aligned our targets to support a global agenda and to be part of collective action. Setting science-based targets to reduce our carbon footprint means we are part of a larger community that is following the science. Similarly, the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals have informed our targets because we believe global corporations have global responsibilities. Our report acknowledges that a business of our size and scale has the opportunity and obligation to lead. Teamwork is required — none of us can do it alone.