Has this ever happened to you? You head out on a trip to a place not familiar, and what’s the first thing you do? You turn to the GPS technology in your car or smartphone. You enter the destination address and then look for routing directions for the fastest way to get there. Those flying look only for direct flights to their destination, because they don’t want to waste time, adding hours to their travel. Why? We want to minimize our resources and arrive as efficiently as possible.
This motivation is analogous to many companies embarking on the journey of establishing a corporate sustainability program. However, without the aid of a “Sustainability GPS” or the benefit of a direct flight, many companies initially set their course internally, with a handful of goals and an eager team ready to tackle them.
Inevitably, somewhere along the line, an unexpected detour thwarts their forward progress. Maybe there are personnel changes, unresponsive departments, a constantly shifting goal line, or any number of other disruptions. These headwinds become distractions causing an on-time delay in your original plan.
Seven Crucial Points Of Interest On Your Sustainability Roadmap
To maximize your time and resource investment, it’s important to develop a corporate sustainability program correctly, from the outset, and then follow proper, proven stages throughout its implementation. From a topline standpoint, establishing a successful sustainability program should include these seven steps:
- Conduct a sustainability assessment to identify areas where you have the greatest needs.
- Set specific and achievable goals for reducing your company’s environmental footprint.
- Develop a focused plan of action, with timelines, to achieve the goals.
- Implement the plan, including recommended changes to the status quo.
- Communicate your performance accomplishments to all invested stakeholders.
- Systematically monitor, report, and improve the sustainability program.
- Develop programs and incentives for employee engagement.
It is important to note your sustainability program should be tailored to your specific industry, along with the goals and resources of the company. To be effective, the goals need to be integrated into all aspects of the business, from operations to decision-making. Additionally, your company should be wholly transparent in its reporting – with reliable data – while continuously striving for improvement.
A GPS For Your Sustainability Program
We present our clients a proprietary framework process called OPTIMUM. This is an acronym which provides the step-by-step development of strategic creation, tactical adoption, performance measurement, and quick modification of their sustainability program, much as described above. The OPTIMUM process succeeds because it has built-in accountability, along with the ability to spot areas of weakness faster. This allows for corrective action before too much time passes and the project veers off course.
Bringing an experienced guide onto the team as a partner, can many times pay for itself. Working the OPTIMUM process with a disciplined cadence, companies can reduce or eliminate many of the distractions hindering timely goals achievement. This benefit alone saves not only time but tremendous amounts of other resources, making the payoff dividends higher… and the ROI quicker.
Much like the in-dash GPS or the direct flight to your vacation destination, working with an experienced partner, who has flattened the learning curve, helps you start faster, work more efficiently, and successfully arrive at your destination faster. And just like the car trip to a new destination, we all want to be more efficient with our time, efforts, and resources, in order to celebrate our arrival sooner. We’re ready to be plugged into your dashboard, and that begins with a conversation.
The team from Okapi Environmental Services has traveled the path before and wants to help organizations who invest in a triple bottom line: The People, the Profits, and the Planet.