Sunday, March 15, 2009

Return on Sustainability

Kudos to my Bainbridge Graduate Institute (BGI)colleague Kevin Wilhelm, for the publication of his new book Return on Sustainability.  Kevin shows the clear business case for sustainability and dealing with the climate crisis proactively.

Kevin highlights the risks and opportunities climate change poses for business.  As I've stated in previous posts, there are opportunities for companies that 'truly' embrace sustainability and Kevin digs into the details including:  enhanced brand value; improved customer, employee and shareholder relations; and better climate performance all at the same time.

As Kevin points out, climate change touches on every aspect of a business: Energy; transportation; innovation; waste; supply chain; employee retention and morale; investor pressure; brand value; customer loyalty; market opportunities; cost savings; tax; regulatory; carbon trading; and leadership.  

Given all that, don't you think a comprehensive strategic business plan should address climate change is a serious manner?  What we learn at BGI, and what I teach my clients is how to address sustainability and climate change in a comprehensive way.  Kevin's new book helps bring that understanding to a wider audience.

Treating climate change as an ancillary issue creates mostly costs for business whereas addressing sustainability comprehensively allows a company to capture the opportunities.

Think of the technological revolution back in the 80s.  Companies that embraced technology in a strategic and comprehensive manner left their competition in the dust.  Those who were slow on the uptake were forever relegated to playing catch up.

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