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5 Essential Conversations for a Winning Sustainability Proposal

Sustainability champions need to obtain executive approval for their proposals. Executive decision-makers must to be convinced that any proposed sustainability initiative will be good for the company as well as good for the environment, society and other stakeholders. That’s their fiduciary duty. The Sustainability ROI Workbook is a comprehensive tool that helps frame a compelling business case using quantified / monetized benefits. But it’s just a tool. Savvy sustainability champions know that the art of building a winning sustainability business case is more important than the accuracy of the numbers in the workbook. They are sensitive to the “human factor.” Let’s suppose that you want to propose a on-site renewal energy installation at company facilities. You will need help from several departments to complete the justification for the project. There are 5 essential conversations for a winning sustainability proposal. Their tone is as important as their content. Let’s start with the tone of your conversation with the CEO.   Read More

Coming soon! 7 Enhancements to the Original “Sustainability ROI Workbook”

We’re on a roll! I self-published the Sustainability ROI Workbook in May 2017. To expedite its use by global legions of sustainability champions, it is a free, open-source resource that is available from my website.  Over 1,600 people have already downloaded it, which is great! I have encouraged people to use this open-source resource as a foundation on which to create new versions for specific sectors or users, for other technology platforms, in other languages, and in simpler formats. I have followed my own suggestion. Based on feedback from users, conversations with chartered professional accountants (CPAs), and good ideas that keep hatching while I’m sleeping, I have created an enhanced 2nd Edition of the workbook. As of September 11, it will replace the current version and will be the new, free, open-source resource that is downloadable from my website from then on. It will include 7 enhancements to the original Sustainability ROI Workbook. Read More

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

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

The 6-Point Publishing Strategy for “The Ultimate Sustainability Advantage Workbook”

The situation is urgent. We need to accelerate corporate action on sustainability issues, especially on climate destabilization. So far, we have been ineffective in marshaling sufficient corporate leadership on impending social and environmental challenges. One reason is that sustainability champions have been ill-equipped to convince hard-nosed business executives that it is in their company's interest to help. We need a more usable, complete, and compelling business case tool. My new book will will fill that need. My last blog,  Coming Soon: “The Ultimate Sustainability Advantage Workbook," provided three reasons why the "ultimate" descriptor is appropriate. Here is my 6-point publishing strategy for The Ultimate Sustainability Advantage Workbook to ensure that it is available to, and usable by, worldwide legions of sustainability champions by November. Read More

3 Reasons the First Future-Fit Benchmark is for Business

"Global governance failure." That risk to world economies was ranked #7 of 31 risks in the World Economic Forum (WEF) "Global Risks 2014" report's. In the WEF's 2015 report, "Failure of national governance" was on the list of the 28 biggest threats to large economies – that is, multinational corporations and countries. This raises the question: "Who's running our world?" There are 3 reasons that the answer is "Corporations." They are the same 3 reasons that the first future-fit benchmark is for business. Read More