Announcing: A Free 7-tool “Swiss Army Knife” for Sustainability Professionals

    I have been foreshadowing my sixth book in my blogs for a couple of years. This week, after six-months of helpful public comment on draft versions, I officially launched the “Sustainability ROI Workbook.” Yes! As a reminder, it is an “e-book” cleverly disguised as an Excel workbook. The comprehensive, fill-in-the-blanks Excel workbook is the e-book. This self-published, open-source resource is a free 7-tool “Swiss Army Knife” for sustainability professionals. Here are its seven built-in uses. Read More

12 Trillion Reasons To Be A More Sustainable Company

(This blog was originally posted on the Sustainable Brands website.) The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) define a world that promises a flourishing future for human civilization on spaceship Earth. Some companies already embrace the SDGs as their aspirational environmental and social goals. Other companies hesitate, in case attaining some or all the goals’ 169 associated targets by 2030 would be at the expense of company success. There are 12 trillion reasons why their hesitation is unjustified.  Read More

98% of Sustainability Initiatives Fail. What the …?!

Failing grades without compelling business cases

Last month, Bain & Company published a rather shocking report, "Achieving Breakthrough Results in Sustainability." The title is encouraging; its findings are not. Based on a survey of over 300 large companies engaged in sustainability efforts, it found that 98% of sustainability initiatives fail. What the ...?! Read More

4 Ways That Stone Soup is a Metaphor for “Ultbook”

The more I refine the business cases in the beta release of the Sustainability Advantage Ultbook, the more I appreciate that it is Stone Soup. Before outlining the 4 ways that Stone Soup is a metaphor for Ultbook, here is a quick refresher on the Stone Soup story. Read More

3 Weighting Factors for the Business Case for Sustainability

ultbook-weighting-approaches What if the financial business case for company action on a pressing environmental or social issue is not good enough? Even after estimating all the direct and indirect benefits with the help of the new Sustainability Advantage Ultbook, and rechecking all the data and assumptions used in its calculations, the return on investment looks disappointing. Then what? Don't despair. Depending on how the 3 weighting factors for the business case for sustainability are applied, the sustainability initiative may still get the flashing green light from executives. Read More

3 Purposes Are Better Than 1

Company purposes have evolved. The usual explicit purpose of a company is to provide products and services that improve the wellbeing of stakeholders like customers or shareholders. That's a necessary purpose, but it is no longer sufficient. To multiply the power of its purpose, a company needs to be purposeful about its intended positive impacts on the wellbeing of two critical implicit stakeholders: the environment and society-at-large. That is, "3 purposes are better than 1." Read More

UltBook: Answering the Big 3 “Whys”

Suppose your company launches several sustainability initiatives and then the sponsoring executives move to another company. The replacement executives are new to "sustainability" and push back, saying “Tell me again why we should bother with all this environmental and social stuff?" When executives ask that overarching "Why" question, they seek answers to the Big 3 "Whys" for any value proposition, especially sustainability initiatives. Read More