The elephant in the room is that while sustainability will continue to be relevant to the business operations of retailers and product manufactures, management has utterly failed to make sustainability a material or even a well understood concept for front-line employees, customers and most product brands, except during times of crisis.
A leader in his field, Tyler Elm specializes in employing business sustainability as a strategic framework for business innovation, profit and organizational enhancement. Tyler has an unprecedented wealth of first-hand knowledge, experience and success at incorporating sustainability into the business operations and culture of some of the world’s largest companies.
In my work as a business management consultant, I find that addressing "environmental issues" is most often not a person's "day job." When starting out, many managers don't know where to turn for advice or are confounded by the information that is sometimes contradictory. Certainly, there is a lot of information out there, and some of it is misinformation -- from suppliers, to consultants, to so-called "environmental" organizations.
03/07/2013 05:44 EST
Some businesses have demonstrated that they can implement and scale the environmental benefits far better traditional approaches to "saving the environment" while also delivering shareholder value. How successful will business be in influencing Canada's approach to environmental issues?
11/27/2012 05:32 EST
Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) and Chief Operating Officers (COOs) are increasingly accountable for sustainability. A study by Deloitte -- Sustainability: CFOs are coming to the table -- found their accountability for sustainability had jumped sharply during the last year. Here are some of the drivers for the CFO's involvement in sustainability.
11/20/2012 12:28 EST
Canada need not wait for others to develop smart policy to promote energy development and environmental stewardship as mutually reinforcing objectives with Canadian interests in mind -- it won't happen and we have more at stake.
11/13/2012 12:07 EST
Every corporation has a culture. Some are more "in your face" than others -- such as those that kick-off meetings with a corporate cheer -- and, if you've never really worked anywhere else, you might not even realize it's there.
11/06/2012 08:56 EST
having a strategy is one thing, but being able to implement it is entirely another. After all, the value of a strategy is not what is written on the whiteboard or the back of napkin, it is the value unleashed by engaging the minds and hearts of motivated employees and suppliers.
10/30/2012 10:39 EDT
Placing a price on carbon of anywhere from $10 to $80 a tonne can have a profound effect on business planning. It can help a company cut costs, while dramatically reducing its risk and exposure to rising energy prices and a price being put on carbon. Which brings us to an important question...
10/23/2012 08:10 EDT
Using sustainability as strategy can drive change within a company's supply chain by engaging suppliers and service providers with the resulting savings running into the millions of dollars a year. A case in point: one of Canadian Tire's most popular products is a six-foot folding utility table, selling many tens-of-thousands a year. The company collaborated with its supplier on product redesign and packaging to use less raw materials to make and package the product.
10/16/2012 07:48 EDT
The billions of dollars that the US sends to Middle Eastern countries to import is a choice. This has led Amory Lovins to state that there's more oil in Detroit than in Saudi Arabia. There's actually no oil in Detroit, but the reluctance of auto executives to pursue higher fuel efficiency standards, imposes billions of dollars of cost on North American companies and car owners.
10/09/2012 05:26 EDT
During a poor economy, it can be a challenge for a business to increase profitability as competition for the "cautious consumer" intensifies and there is increasing pressure on margins. But a recession offers the perfect opportunity to question the way things have always been done -- and drive out waste and inefficiency. One of Jim's favourite slogans is: "a crisis is a terrible thing to waste."
10/02/2012 08:12 EDT
In just the energy efficiency (EE) field, $2 trillion can be invested by 2020 with an internal rate of return (IRR) of 17 per cent. To put that into perspective: that rate of return is better than investing in the stock market or in real estate over the long-term. Why aren't we executing some of these simple, economically viable -- in fact hugely profitable solutions?
09/25/2012 11:00 EDT
Decades of experience have shown that environmental initiatives pursued in isolation of the economic benefit are largely immaterial. But when environmental objectives are framed as business strategy and tied to business operations and measured in terms of cutting cost and increasing profitability -- significant environmental benefits are generated. And so we believe that environmentalism can save business, as the more powerful engagement tool that business has at its disposal to drive innovation.
09/18/2012 08:01 EDT
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