Once upon a time, innovative products and services were enough to obtain a loyal customer base. However, a volatile economy and increasingly socially conscious environment have given rise to the Values Economy. The Values Economy combines profit with purpose and determines who customers do (or don’t do) business with. Although corporate event planners may find themselves in an ever-evolving landscape, Steelhead is here to help break down this economic shift and its impact on future events.

What is the Values Economy?

The current economy is riddled with complexity and as a response stakeholders have prioritized inclusivity and shared values in their decision making process. Let’s take a closer look at this economic shift.

The Values Economy is a trifecta movement.

B&T Magazine emphasizes that brands are no longer sole entities. Customers choose where they want to spend their money, employees where they want to work, and investors where to place their capital. This trifecta has helped create a group of stakeholders that rally around shared values.

The Values Economy is a form of Conscious Capitalism.

The Conscious Capitalism Movement aims to create a fairer version of capitalism, and its credo has four tenets: a higher purpose, stakeholder orientation, conscious leadership, and conscious culture. Participating brands include industry leaders like Whole Foods Market, The Motley Fool, and Scribe Media.  

The Values Economy is multi-generational.

The Values Economy is not limited to millennials and Gen Z. B&T Magazine cites SAI’s 2019 Consumer Trust report, noting that ethical concerns were some of the driving forces behind whether consumers left a brand.

How will the Values Economy affect events?

The trade show industry has become embroiled in controversy due to the 600,000 tons of waste it generates each year. The good news? Event marketers that embrace the Values Economy can help create a more sustainable future. The rise of the Values Economy will lead companies and brands to partner with sustainable suppliers that align with their values.

Where does Steelhead fit in?

The rise of the Values Economy aligns with Steelhead’s Access Model, which revolves around removing the burden of owning exhibits. As the only B Corp Certified trade show company in North America, economic and environmental sustainability are essential Steelhead values. We strive to make the most of our time, the most precious non-renewable resource of them all. By repurposing and reconfiguring sustainable exhibit components, we reduce waste and stand by our credo: “It’s not just what we do: it’s how we do it that matters.”


The Values Economy is about more than a product - it’s about a mission. Our purpose is simple: Steelhead exists to share resources to create great experiences. In uncertain times, it is vital to have a reliable and flexible supplier that aligns with your values and can quickly pivot. To find out more about how Steelhead’s Access Model creates uniquely customized events, contact our team today!

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