Leadership and Sustainability

Article 28 March 2024

Talk of sustainability and responsibility has been swirling for a long time now, but as we listen to the challenges facing our clients today it's clear that there is a renewed weight behind organisations' efforts on sustainability.

Leaders must keep a long vision, because to invest in an organisation’s future is to invest in the communities and ecosystems supporting it. 

Here are four areas where leaders can make a real impact on the sustainability agenda.

Get everyone at every level in your organisation talking about the opportunity to really have an impact and drive the sustainability agenda.  In many ways, this is your starting point and helps to make this a priority for the organisation, not just for the leadership team.

Translate sustainability into ‘promise of future value’ to help leaders broaden their time horizons and think systemically about the complexity of the challenge. This helps to put the agenda into a business and leadership context, and shows a long-term commitment.

Challenge your leaders to understand your organisation’s impact – positive and negative – on climate and biodiversity. This is critical to understand what the challenges are for the leadership team.

Weave sustainability into the fabric of your organisation, whether through your values, your stories, or your team routines and meeting practices. Again, this helps to make it an organisational thread and responsibility.

Treat nature as a stakeholder in the decision-making process. This will help leaders to consider the ongoing sustainability implications in their decision-making.  We are reminded of Apple's recent film that put Mother Nature at the table, quite literally!

Sheppard_Moscow_Headshots_056.jpg Andrea Cusack