Beyond Business As Usual: Systemic Risk and Opportunity

Following the successful Limits of Growth events in Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Singapore, the Beyond Business as Usual series will look at how firms are practically tackling the strategic issues of sustainability and then recalibrating their models. It is a process that may start off with philanthropy, efficiency, and offsets, but one that needs to quickly needs to move towards strategic actions th…

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The 6 “Re”s of a Successful Recalibration

When speaking of the need for recalibration, many executives are still struggling with developing a process that they can leverage to move the core of their firm into a place where the risk of environmental, social, and economic shocks are mitigated, and where they are positioned to take advantage of new opportunities. It is a process where no templates exist, and depending on the firm's structur…

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3 Lessons on Internal Engagement I Learned from Interface

In the first two weeks of June, through the Beyond Business As Usual platform, we organized and hosted six events with Erin Meezan, Vice President of Sustainability for Interface.  As one of the firms executives, and a key reason for why the firm is now a firm recognized leader for their efforts to build a business with a core of sustainability, I came away with a deep appreciation for the effort…

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Recalibrating Education as Usual: Teaching Sustainability and Social Innovation

If there is one thing that teaching a project based course to 205 MBA students in china, it is that we have to recalibrate how students are engaged, incubated, and engaged, and in this presentation I spend 30 minutes speaking to how I have attempted (and at times succeed) in doing this. 5 years into this process now, for me the greatest lessons that I myself have learned are: 1) Sustainability…

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When Will Business As Usual Change?

Last week was "boot camp". 200 MBA students engaged in a week of sustainability.   Lectures,  panels, movies, workshops, and case studies. It was an intense period that precedes their projects (we launched 34 student projects at the same time), and is meant to give students an understanding of the issues faced (environmental, social, and economic), the role of the firm, and the responsibility t…

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World Bank Shows 4 Degrees by 2060 Feasible.

For those of you who missed it, the World Bank came out with a report today stating they are now seeing a reasonable chance that the temperature of the Earth will rise 4 degrees by 2060.  To say that this will have radical consequences on large geographic areas and populations on Earth is an understatement, but one has to wonder... will anything be done in time? This was a question that I found…

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Plugging the Sustainability Gap

Tweaking the graphics that I have come to rely on for many of my presentations, I decided it was time to take a crack at developing a visual representation of what I feel has become the gap between economic performance and social and environmental sustainability. And the above was what I have come up with. For me, where this simple visual I believe does the job is that the sustainability gap i…

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Planning For Consumer disruptions

In the recent article The Cheapest Generation, a paragraph stood out: It passed out 100 of the cars to influential bloggers for a free six-month test-drive, with just one condition: document your experience online, whether you love the Fiesta or hate it. Young bloggers loved the car. Young drivers? Not so much. After a brief burst of excitement, in which Ford sold more than 90,000 units over 18 m…

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Turning Sustainability Into a Game Every Employee Will Love

I'm convinced that the only way that we can move towards a true measure of sustainability is to find ways to embed it within the threads of our daily actions, and in a way that are not readily apparent to anyone.  And in reading the recent article on Fast Company  What sustainability efforts could learn from Angry Birds, I thought that they hit the mark in many ways. The list was: 1. Align employ…

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Why Won’t Firms Do More “Good” With Less Profit?

Last week,  when I asked my friends on Facebook for their opinion on my recent presentation on Beyond Business As Usual, I was asked by one friend "whatever happened to doing the right thing even if it impacted the bottom line?" It was a great question, and I had two hree reasons why more firms have not traditionally been willing to see "good" as the "right" thing to do through their corporation:…

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