Comprehensive Sustainability Plan and Structure
Client A: $4 billion global medical products company
Objective: Create greater awareness about meaning, practical importance and relevance of sustainability among the company’s key decision-makers; help organization identify areas of sustainability that can add greatest value; assess approaches used by peer companies in addressing these areas; establish a 3-year plan of action; suggest rational structure to guide initiative, building from what exists.
Approach: Conducted individual and small group interviews with several dozen executives to discuss the meaning of sustainability, its relevance to the company, and the perceived strengths and improvement opportunities of the company in various aspects of sustainability; benchmarked with other medical products companies on topics warranting greatest attention; consolidated findings from interviews and benchmarking into a report including draft 3-year implementation plan with priorities ; worked with staff to recommend structural adjustments to better integrate and manage sustainability initiatives, adapting and expanding EHS Council for this purpose.
Sustainability Vision and Goals
Client B: $5 billion global wire and cable company
Objective: Raise awareness among company executives and their spouses about the meaning and importance of sustainability and its relevance to the wire and cable industry; help executives develop a sustainability vision for the company, including areas of focus and broad long-term objectives as well as topics for shorter term goal setting; identify possible improvements in approach to sustainability reporting.
Approach: Reviewed the sustainability programs and issues of leading producers of wire and cable products; conducted 2-day workshop, starting with general awareness presentation for executives and spouses; worked with CEO and staff to examine global stakeholder expectations of a typical “sustainable company” and helped them organize relevant expectations into a catchy five-point company vision of sustainability objectives with supporting goals; later, survey questions framed around each of the five points were placed on the company’s website to collect ongoing feedback; reviewed the company’s past sustainability reports and provided advice on what the company could do to move to various levels of GRI reporting.
Improved Stakeholder Engagement and Reporting
Client C: $2 billion global energy-from-waste company
Objective: Establish engagement process and build credibility with key NGOs and other influencers; help identify sustainability areas for focus; develop process, content, and approach for sustainability reporting and otherwise improve transparency about sustainability issues, achievements and improvement opportunities.
Approach: Presented overview of sustainability to corporate executives; reviewed GRI Sustainability Reporting Guidelines and best reporting processes with those responsible for reporting; held a series of small group discussions about relevant sustainability reporting metrics, the sustainability issues of importance to the company, and its perceived strengths and improvement opportunities; solicited feedback on company from key NGO groups; identified potential candidates for a diverse, global report-and-performance review panel; helped identify good report-writing contractors; critiqued first draft sustainability report to ready it for panel review; aided with panel review and feedback process; coached company on finalization and use of report for further stakeholder engagement and other purposes.
Green Products Strategy, Tools and Training
Client D: $5 billion global stationery products wholesaler
Objective: Raise awareness about sustainability and green products with sales and marketing force; assist in the development of a green products catalog; develop green products and sustainability tools and a special training program for US wholesale and retail distributors that sell the company’s products.
Approach: Worked with the vice president and director of marketing to develop and present to the US sales and marketing staffs an overview of green products and sustainability; helped develop and roll out over a dozen regional training sessions covering green products catalog, green products sales strategy, an overview of sustainability, and sustainability program tools for distributors to offer their own commercial customers.
Improvements in EHS Program and Structure
Client E: $14 billion medical products company
Objective: Identify improvements that should be made in the management approach for environment, health and safety at the corporate level and help persuade upper management to adopt those changes.
Approach: Reviewed the status of the company’s EHS programs with the environmental and safety and health directors; conducted interviews with a representative set of corporate and facility leaders; based on that input and professional judgment, helped the two directors identify needed improvements and craft a presentation for management recommending and explaining these improvements; provided follow-up coaching.
Awareness About Sustainability Meaning and Industry Best Practices
Clients F, G, H, I & J: $19 billion global defense products company / $6 billion global industrial products company/ US electrical power industry trade association /two US food-related trade associations
Objective: Raise awareness among business executives about the meaning and importance of sustainability and its relevance to their industry and supply chain.
Approach: Reviewed sustainability programs within the industry and a few key suppliers and customers; prepared and delivered a presentation on the meaning and importance of sustainability, the sustainability issues of significance to the industry, and the best practices for sustainability programs among industry companies.
Long-Term, Cost-Effective Coaching on Sustainability Program Improvement
Client K: $3 billion global book supplier and book store operator
Objective: Find a simple, low cost way to begin down the path toward sustainability.
Approach: Presented overview on sustainability, its meaning and relevance to a small planning committee of the company; helped company adapt for their own use a current, widely used measurement tool for university sustainability programs; provided brief periodic coaching on specific aspects of the sustainability program; helped develop a longer term plan for further integrating sustainability into various parts of the company to more completely realize the value it offers.
Representation in Standards Body Negotiations
Client L: Large global, multistakeholder NGO
Objective: Help assure that the new standard is understandable, practical and effective in aiding organizations along the path to sustainability and is compatible with the client’s own tools.
Approach: Partnered with another expert to represent the client at a series of negotiating sessions held over a number of years; reviewed and prepared comments on drafts; caucused with client, partner and peers to help craft strategies and tactics to achieve the objective.
Research on Important Aspects of Corporate Sustainability Issues and Programs
Client M: Major US trade association of major businesses
Objective: Provide four scholarly papers on corporate sustainability.
Approach: Organized research panel of sustainability leaders from a dozen corporations in various industries; conducted a series of one-hour interviews with each panel member on various sustainability topics, including their company’s general approach to sustainability; published three short papers and one comprehensive research paper presenting the findings along with other relevant observations and concepts.