COP27 highlighted the need for increased action and pace towards net zero solutions, across the globe, yet recent events and issues are causing people and companies to move some of their attention elsewhere. We must keep the pressure up and also demonstrate the long-term value of working towards Net Zero and a more sustainable future. This means being more innovative and more effective in our efforts.
In their drive to Net Zero, management must confront the following issues:
- Getting serious. Sustainability is more than removing plastic cups and straws from the canteen. It’s much more than merely setting up a central sustainability function. It’s all about capturing bold ideas and embedding new thinking into the way you make decisions… the way you invest… the way you change operating models and cultures.
- The supply chain. Suppliers can be the cause of most emissions. No wonder business leaders are petrified – they are judged on performances they can’t control.
- Stakeholder expectations. Employees, customers and especially shareholders are unforgiving when companies fail to deliver on sustainability pledges. International legislation and the court of world opinion are ruthlessly critical.
Net Zero cannot fly on noble intentions. To make sustainable goals real and achieveable, companies must first win the hearts and minds of their workforce and the outside world… they must engage with everyone, at every level now!
Join this vital session to learn three things that will help your organisation make (more) rapid progress.
- Firstly, you must apply innovative thinking to how you, as a company, are going to achieve Net Zero and become more sustainable. Many of you have already plucked the low hanging fruit on this one, so the issue is what next? Also, by embracing sustainability there is an opportunity to grow your business and increase your ability to hire and retain (younger) staff that are very purpose driven.
- Secondly, you need to tap into the brain power of not just your entire workforce but the outside world; turning to people brimming with ideas on how to deal with this substantial issue/opportunity.
- Thirdly, you should install smart devices to establish just how sustainable your buildings and facilities are, so you can measure, adjust and drive down your CO2 footprint, energy and water consumption, every day.
- Helping a client conceive and develop sustainable products – L&G is the UK’s largest provider of individual life insurance products and the biggest manager of corporate pension schemes. L&G is an expert in safeguarding people’s financial futures. It wanted to support communities and businesses well into the future by taking innovative action on climate change. The challenge was to bring together all of its businesses to create ground-breaking new financial products that would put the organisation at the forefront of a net zero economy. Innovation experts magnetic worked with a group-wide team of 100+ people to design and implement an intensive nine-month accelerator programme. Using lean and agile methodologies, they generated ten new ideas in the sustainability space, built an internal innovation mindset, and helped all the businesses to collaborate at pace. Out of the 10 ideas discussed, developed and tested in the business, two ideas are now propositions that L&G is taking to market and five have been taken back into the business for further incubation. As well as resulting in actionable propositions, the programme created a culture of collaboration and action to help L&G focus on where it puts its trillion-pound financial muscle.
- Helping a client tap into the internal and external idea pool – Enel is one of the world’s leading integrated electricity and gas operators. They are committed to leading the way in sustainability and are exploring the potential new solutions and innovations that will power the future. Innovation and sustainability are both fundamental and inter-dependent for the group: sustainability requires ongoing innovation and, for innovation to be genuinely useful, it must be sustainable. This innovation has taken the form of co-creation with start-ups, SMEs, and large companies through an international community of partners, resources, customers and data. Enel started with their own network of around 8,000 problem solvers in 2018. By partnering with Wazoku, Enel has extended their reach for problem-solving to hundreds of thousands of active solvers, who have proposed over 7,000 solutions to date!
- Helping customers establish how sustainable their facilities are – Rocky Bay, a specialist disability care and support provider in Australia, were looking for a solution that could help them make informed decisions about the spaces they operate and the right-sizing over their overall portfolio. They sought data to minimize the impact any expansion would have on their carbon footprint while getting decisions right about existing buildings – which to expand, which to leave, and how to ensure an outcome that is both financially efficient and sustainable. Data from sensors is collected on room and desks to enable hot desking for staff, as well providing usage data to inform decisions around portfolio performance, sustainability, lighting, cooling, heating, cleaning regimes. The data is delivered from the Microshare platform in clear, easy to understand dashboards enabling the property and sustainability teams to make real time decisions about their building while corporate leadership gets empirical data to right-size the company’s real estate footprint.