Pre-master's Students Gain Insight into IKEA's Ethics and Sustainability Practices

Pre-master's Students Gain Insight into IKEA's Ethics and Sustainability Practices

Pre-master's Students Gain Insight into IKEA's Ethics and Sustainability Practices

Group Visit to Company Engages Students in Various Activities

With the goal of providing firsthand exposure to real-world business practices, Wittenborg organised a visit to IKEA Amersfoort for a group of 24 pre-master's students on 30 May. Led by associate professor and Deputy Head of the School of Business, Dadi Chen, the activity was organised in collaboration with alumna Somayyeh Nowroozi, who currently serves as the Product Quality & Recovery Manager at IKEA. 

The visit was conducted within the module Research Methods and Business Ethics. Its main objectives were to enable students to delve into IKEA's approaches to business ethics and sustainability and to identify potential areas for research projects. 

During the excursion, students were welcomed by Josselien Brand, HR Manager at IKEA, who delivered an insightful presentation on the ethical management of human resources within the company.  

Among other topics, Brand discussed IKEA's code of conduct, co-worker journey, retention strategy and initiatives promoting equality, diversity and inclusiveness. Emphasising the company's long-standing commitment to its values, she underscored its comprehensive training programmes and annual satisfaction surveys aimed at ensuring alignment with its ethical standards. 

Furthermore, students had the opportunity to gain first-hand insights into IKEA's sustainability initiatives through a presentation by Somayyeh Nowroozi. Nowroozi detailed IKEA's efforts in various areas, from supply chain management to waste disposal and product recycling, underscoring the company's commitment to minimising environmental impact. An engaging quiz session further tested the students’ understanding of IKEA's sustainability practices. 

One of the highlights of the visit was the exploration of IKEA’s ‘Second Chance Corner’, where returned, damaged or displayed products are refurbished and offered at discounted prices – an example of the company's commitment to sustainability and resource efficiency.


Pre-master's Students Gain Insight into IKEA's Ethics and Sustainability Practices

Over the course of the activities, the students actively participated in discussions and asked multiple questions regarding IKEA's management practices and potential employment opportunities within the organisation. 

Reflecting on the experience, associate professor Dadi Chen remarked that the excursion provided invaluable insights for the participating students. “It offered them a glimpse into the intricate workings of a global company renowned for its ethical and sustainable practices. We are grateful to Somayyeh and the team at IKEA for their hospitality and for sharing their expertise with our students.” 

IKEA’s Product Quality & Recovery Manager Somayyeh Nowroozi, who completed an MBA in Education Management at Wittenborg, highlighted that these visits help students understand how theoretical concepts apply to practice. “They see what skills and qualifications are required to bring their knowledge into practice. It gives them a better understanding of the main topics they have learned during their studies and helps them reflect on their capabilities and possible opportunities in the future.” 

Student Bahareh Monazah expressed her satisfaction with the visit, highlighting the insights she got from this experience. “It was interesting to observe how IKEA approaches the sustainable sourcing of materials, labour practices and customer return policies, especially the ‘Second Chance Plan’. This helped me gain a better understanding of how companies can balance business goals with ethical practices.” 

WUP 19/06/2024 
by Ulisses Sawczuk 
©WUAS Press