Make no mistake: sustainability has gone mainstream. It’s the focus of almost every organisational strategy. It’s making news headlines daily. In fact, one of the best-selling business books in 2021 was Bill Gates’ How To Avoid a Climate Disaster.
By now, we all know what to do – governments and NGOs have already stated the roadmap; reach net zero by 2030; cut emissions by 78% by 2035; the list of objectives goes on. However, what these organisations have yet to communicate is actually how the business community can achieve these goals; what are the practical steps, what is the time and cost investment required – or more importantly, where do we start?
The latter is perhaps the most important question for any business embarking on a sustainability strategy – for if you don’t know where you are now, how can you measure your success when you finally reach your destination?
Where do you start with sustainability?
Identifying, reviewing and benchmarking your current sustainability position is an essential task and requires an honest assessment of all current business practices. Where businesses are currently on their sustainability journey will vary, from being non-compliant and potentially operating illegally through to being fully purpose driven. Most companies are probably somewhere in the middle, with a few who are the leaders when it comes to fully embracing sustainability so that it drives everything they do. Even organisations that are purpose-driven however can still benefit from sustainability consultancy to help them further develop and realise their strategy. It’s a journey and not a destination and a process of continual improvement.
Start with the ‘why’
In his book Start with the Why, Simon Sinek talks about the importance of an organisation understanding its why – the reason it exists, its true USP, what makes it different; the reason its
people get up in the morning and go to work. For any sustainability strategy to be successful, it must be integrated into an organisation’s why. Effective sustainability is not a tick-box exercise, but a purpose and a mission.
This is why we always start with a company’s why. We work to understand your purpose, vision, mission and values and how they resonate throughout every stage of the company in relation to sustainability. We ask lots of questions – some of them probing – using a variety of specialist tools and processes, culminating in a ‘Crazy Jam Day’ where we take a deeper dive into your organisation through creative practice. This is often where the light bulb moments occur, particularly for senior executives who are generally used to workshop sessions that are more corporate.
Once you understand sustainability in relation to your company purpose, we will then move on to the practical assessments – for example, our Carbon Emission Assessments and Foot printing, or our Sustainability Impact Assessment.
We all understand the goals and objectives for sustainability– they have been made very clear. However, not every business understands where they are today – and that’s what the ASSESS stage of our sustainability consultancy aims to do.
Ready to ASSESS where you are in your sustainability journey?
Give us a call today!
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