DP #12: Sustainability Implementation Method Success Article 39 4 Success Secrets for Small Business Sustainability, suggests that businesses implement small sustainable initiatives in order to be successful. It states that, “it’s better to implement just a few small programs to get going and be consistent than to try to launch a wide-ranging program that no one follows through on.” However, many of our other readings talk about how making sustainability a big part of the company, incorporating it into all aspects of the business, and making it a part of the culture are the best ways to ensure the program is followed through with and successful. How does a business leader decide which of these conflicting methods is best for their own company? JC Response: They are not really competing, as one approach is easier for some companies (slow can be better in a conservative field) while others may want to jump right in for competitive reasons (as for companies that have found out that competitors are cleaning their clocks by being ahead on addressing sustainability issues, and the firm wants to respond as soon as they can.) it totally depends on culture and vision and leadership to pick the correct approach. DP #13: Bringing discipline to your sustainability initiatives . Has Sustainability truly become a strategic imperative or has firms finally realized what’s good for the planet is good for business, or will that change. Customers more than ever are seeking socially responsible goods and companies are profiting from it. Is that why sustainability is being addressed or is it just the pressure of shareholders to make more money? What about our new administration? Will we see a shift in the discipline of sustainability in the next four years because of it? JC Response: The role of customers are often a great driving force- the power of “we won’t buy your product if you don’t become more sustainable in your operations” is not to be underestimated, as when Walmart told suppliers to cut their energy use by 10% or they would go elsewhere. That brings a large amount of discipline! I am not worrying about the sustainability views of the White House, as they can slow some parts of sustainability, but that will only hurt the competitiveness of US companies in world markets. The real power in corporate sustainability is the 500+ major multinationals whose CEOs have committed their firms to implement the Paris Climate Agreement- now that is the real power to make a difference on climate change and sustainability. Business and individuals will drive sustainability in the USA, just as it is happening overseas, while the politicians in DC will quibble over trying to renegotiate a Paris agreement that is totally voluntary!
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- Summer '19
- Business, sustainability initiative