Keys To The Development Of A Sustainable Company
Sustainability means that what is good for the company is also good for the planet, and vice versa. Being sustainable implies creating more than what is destroyed. Sustainable companies are those that do a better job of creating net economic, social, and ecological wealth than any of their competitors.
Productivity, Innovation, And Sustainability In The Company
Productivity and innovation were the forerunners of the current model of business leadership that, based on a deep respect for the environment and with an unprecedented social conscience, focuses on corporate sustainability. This concept encompasses not only learning but also the best practices of its predecessors, with a different twist, which comes from the intense competition for resources that are experienced on a global scale.
Resources and human talent must be correctly guided towards a more sustainable future and, on this path, companies have a lot to say. Making efficient use of natural resources and human capital is seen as a necessity to survive, with capital letters, not only in the business environment. That is why sustainability is becoming one of the key criteria used when judging the quality of a company and its leaders.
The Keys To The Development Of A Sustainable Company
Sustainability is, like science, conjunction of theory and practice in which motivation cannot be lacking. The keys to the development of a sustainable company can be specified in five:
- Integrate sustainability and strategy: each business must include sustainability at the roots of the corporate strategy, treating it as a priority issue and not as a peripheral issue. The mistake of approaching sustainability from a different angle and through the approach of an independent strategy must be avoided.
- Incorporate sustainability into the company culture: extending it to all areas and levels, seeking the commitment of all stakeholders. The objective is that each member of the organization (not only workers and directors but also suppliers, shareholders, and subcontractors), internalizes the new values acquired by the company to achieve their co-responsibility.
- Quantify the benefits of sustainability and assess the risks involved in not acting accordingly. In this mission, the management of hypothetical scenarios that allow evaluating the potential impact of future environmental and social problems can be very useful. As Dr. Willard puts it, “Sustainability can increase revenue, reduce energy and waste costs, reduce material and water costs, increase employee productivity, minimize employee turnover, and reduce costs.” strategic and operational risks. Failing to assess risks means being unprotected from natural resource scarcity and labor strikes to violent weather and drought, issues that can affect the business, the supply chain, and even the ability to operate in certain regions.
- Be more transparent. Communicate the good, the bad, and the regular efforts that are being carried out in terms of sustainability, exposing what the improvement plans are. Many stock exchanges have adopted or are considering adopting listing requirements for sustainability reporting. Be direct when informing about the current state of the company in terms of sustainability and clear when communicating the actions that are going to be taken to improve in each area.
- Anticipate and adapt to changing circumstances. Innovating, applying new creative ideas, and transforming instead of discarding, are the bases of the new recycling and waste management. It is always possible to give something another use or find another function for it before discarding it, it is the basis of creativity applied to innovation with the aim of sustainability.
The Pillars Of Sustainability In The Company
Responsible competitiveness and sustainable development are supported by:
- Environment: taking into account the scarcity of environmental resources and establishing a commitment that leads to a better world.
- Governance: observing the applicable external regulations and also the values of the company contained in its culture.
- Responsible trade: through the involvement of shareholders, customers, suppliers, and any other entity with which it interacts.
- Public policy and communication: that reports reality, based on transparency.
The development of a sustainable company is imprinted in the brand and endures in the value proposition to the customer; it is not separated from the core of the business, but attends to the social improvements that can be launched simultaneously with the growth itself; it is recognized in the vision and is executed jointly with the mission.