Sustainability Blog: Do it Now!

As you end one year and look forward to the next, what are you hoping for?  What vision do you have for your organization, your team and yourself? 

 

After working with clients for years to help them become more sustainable, it becomes clear that the bar should be set much higher.  Sustainability implies doing less harm, taking no more from the earth than we can return.  What if instead of settling for becoming sustainable, we seek to become vibrant, to thrive, and to flourish? 

 

This doesn’t mean we don’t abandon efforts...

Too many companies, non-government organizations (NGOs), government agencies and communities still fall into the trap of creating strategies for the future based on what has happened in the past.  Scenario planning helps organizations create growth strategies by finding ways to prepare for an increasingly unpredictable future, and can even shape the direction of things to come.

The objective isn’t to predict the future, but to prepare for it and even create it.  Scenario planning brings together cross-functional groups of leaders and key stakeholders to imagine several...

The strategic conversation has shifted.  The time has come to realize that obsessing about quarterly results won't build an enduring company.  Businesses still just creating three to five year strategic plans miss opportunities and put their organizations at risk.  Forward-thinking leaders shape the future by achieving results in the short-term while building the foundation for opportunities in the longer term.  Organizations such as Unilever, Coca-Cola, Nike, and Marks and Spencer find ways to create greater value for their companies by creating value for society....

Nike recently launched a free app available for designers and consumers to use to compare the environmental impacts of various fabrics such as silk, polypropylene, leather, linen and more.  Using cotton as a comparison material, users can see ratings under categories of chemistry, water, energy and greenhouse gas emissions, waste, recycled, organic and a basic material score.  I’ve downloaded the app and discovered that “the touch, the feel of cotton” gets rather beat up in the scoring.  Spandex does even worse since it produces 158% more waste than cotton and silk uses 50%...

More than 1,500 garment workers died and more than 1,000 were seriously injured in three recent highly publicized tragedies in Bangladesh, the collapse of the Rana Plaza and a sweater factory fire in Dhaka in 2013 and the 2012 fire in the Tazreen garment factory.  People in these factories work deep within the supply chain of large apparel makers and retailers.  Global companies that source their products from Bangladesh have been under extreme pressure to take action that will help avoid such accidents in the future. 

 

In May of this year, three weeks...