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Stories About Storytelling

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BBMG's Raphael Bemporad on How Businesses Can Help Drive Transformational Change [Video]
BBMG's Raphael Bemporad on How Businesses Can Help Drive Transformational Change [Video]

PRODUCT, SERVICE & DESIGN INNOVATION - In this interview from the Sustainable Brands 2013 conference in San Diego, BBMG co-founder Raphael Bemporad discusses the need for businesses to engage consumers in ways that will help drive transformational change.To learn how some brands are driving change, check out our #BrandInnovation channel.

Sustainable People, Part II: The Costs of Excellence
Sustainable People, Part II: The Costs of Excellence

ORGANIZATIONAL CHANGE - In Part I of this series we introduced the Excellence Trap, and diagnosed its drivers and shortcomings. Here in Part II, we’ll take a close look at the costs we incur when we’re in the Excellence Trap, in order to see clearly what unsustainable people and organizations suffer. Then we’ll turn to the solution, introduce mastery and five shifts we must make to become sustainable. And in Part III we’ll discuss the way to get there, as well as the way not to.

How a Towel Rail Changed a Village
How a Towel Rail Changed a Village

BEHAVIOR CHANGE - I was asked recently about my favourite behaviour change stories in the energy space. I didn’t have to think long: my favourite is the one about the £200-a-year towel rail. Yep, you heard that right: a towel rail.

Conscious Leadership Reminds Us: We Are All the Same
Conscious Leadership Reminds Us: We Are All the Same

LEADERSHIP - Last year, aspiring artist Jonathan Harris visited Bhutan to learn about why this country is so imbued with happiness. Bhutan is noted for measuring its Gross Happiness Product, rather than what we do in western cultures, which is to measure our Gross National Product. This model cares more about social and spiritual well-being than financial well-being. Jonathan's project, Balloons for Bhutan, documents his effort to capture “a portrait of happiness in the last Himalayan kingdom.”

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Top 20 Videos Shown on the Main Stage at SB'13
Top 20 Videos Shown on the Main Stage at SB'13

BLOG - Since the end of our SB'13 conference last month, we have received many requests from our community, asking for links to the videos we showed on the main stage. So here are, by popular demand, the 20 most buzzed-about videos aired during the plenary sessions in San Diego, in the order in which they appeared:

Paying It Forward: How DMV.org Is Taking Sustainability to the Streets
Paying It Forward: How DMV.org Is Taking Sustainability to the Streets

ORGANIZATIONAL CHANGE - In the afterglow of the Sustainable Brands 2013 conference, many companies found themselves inspired to bring positive change back to their business and local communities. At DMV.org, we recognized a huge opportunity to reach a vast network of people and drive actionable change both through our online services and our local community.As first-time attendees to the conference, the entire team walked away inspired, hopeful and committed to becoming change-makers within our company, community and planet. But what can a company that simplifies DMV information online bring to the sustainability table?As it turns out, quite a bit.What We’re Doing

Branding for Sustainability: A Manifesto!
Branding for Sustainability: A Manifesto!

MARKETING AND COMMS - I wrote recently about branding for sustainability, rather than the branding of sustainability. The main point is that branding is no longer merely about communication techniques that get tacked on to a business. Instead, branding shapes the entire landscape of engagement, experience and affinity between a company or other entity and its customers and other stakeholders or audiences. So it’s time for a manifesto.

Stop Speaking Martian: How to Effectively Translate the Language of Sustainability
Stop Speaking Martian: How to Effectively Translate the Language of Sustainability

MARKETING AND COMMS - As the sustainability profession grapples with how it can invite and entice a new internal conversation with a broader, ‘beyond-sustainability-silo’ brand and business audience, we are struggling with many fundamental challenges. Language is one of these. But why so?

Paper Company Rejects FSC to Dodge Inquiry About Indonesian Deforestation Practices
Paper Company Rejects FSC to Dodge Inquiry About Indonesian Deforestation Practices

SUPPLY CHAIN - Paper giant Asia Pacific Resources International Limited (APRIL) has withdrawn from the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), which Greenpeace, the Rainforest Action Network (RAN) and WWF claim is an attempt to dodge an independent inquiry into the paper company’s deforestation practices in Indonesia.Prior to APRIL’s withdrawal, the three environmental organizations lodged a complaint that the company was in violation of FSC’s Policy for Association through its continued large-scale conversion of natural forests in Indonesia to plantations, including the destruction of high conservation value (HCV) forests. The organizations also claim the company has persistent social conflicts in its operations.

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What Happens in Vegas Is Personal: How Designing for Human Experience Can Scale Sustainability
What Happens in Vegas Is Personal: How Designing for Human Experience Can Scale Sustainability

What do a set of keys, a Velcro wallet from 1988 and an hour-long commute have in common? On the surface, not much. But at a recent meeting we hosted, they each represented personal stories from our participants and how companies face the opportunity or challenge to meet consumer needs while driving sustainability. In downtown Las Vegas on June 12-13, GreenOrder convened a group of 15 leaders from companies including eBay, Facebook, Las Vegas Sands, National Grid, Republic Services, RidePal, ThredUp, UPS and Zappos to discuss how friction points in our daily human experience can illustrate the need for new business models that also improve sustainability.

New Documentary 'Sparks' Collaboration That Could Benefit People in Need Locally and Globally
New Documentary 'Sparks' Collaboration That Could Benefit People in Need Locally and Globally

MARKETING AND COMMS - At the dawn of the 21st century, America’s spiraling energy consumption hijacks our democracy and gambles our planet’s future. Meanwhile, 50 million Americans live in poverty, while our government stalls behind party lines. Next spring a new documentary, The Spark, will reveal a blueprint for realistic, immediate solutions.

Sword & Plough Giving Military Veterans and Fabrics New Life and Purpose
Sword & Plough Giving Military Veterans and Fabrics New Life and Purpose

WASTE NOT - The ancient phrase “to turn swords into plough shares” may not be common today, but Emily and Betsy Nunez are doing their best to keep it relevant. The phrase means to take military technologies and materials (the swords) and apply them to peaceful civilian activities (the plough shares). Their new company, appropriately called Sword & Plough, is repurposing surplus military material into fashionable bags and accessories.

Scope 5 Helping Businesses Find New Insights Into Their Sustainability Data
Scope 5 Helping Businesses Find New Insights Into Their Sustainability Data

MARKETING AND COMMS - With the continued, rampant growth of our community come countless opportunities to engage with new, innovative companies and the brains behind them. Today, meet Scope 5 founder Yoram Bernet.

Learning How to Share Again [Video]
Learning How to Share Again [Video]

PRODUCT, SERVICE & DESIGN INNOVATION - As toddlers, most of us had to learn how to share against our more basic instincts.

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Study: "Meaningful Brands" Outperform Stock Market by 120%
Study: "Meaningful Brands" Outperform Stock Market by 120%

MARKETING AND COMMS - During last week’s SB’13 conference in San Diego, Havas Media unveiled new research that could provide further insight into the minds of consumers. Results released this week from Havas’ latest Meaningful Brands study statistically demonstrate that “meaningful brands” outperform the stock market by 120%. The Meaningful Brands Index (MBI) — Havas’ new metric of brand strength — is considered the first of its kind to connect human well-being with brands at a business level. It demonstrates the relationship correlation between people and brands, and how this can affect the volume of measuring, communicating and delivering increased well-being — on a personal and community level.

From Revolution to Renaissance?
From Revolution to Renaissance?

BLOG - I had occasion this week to be in San Diego for Sustainable Brands '13, where I offered opening remarks on June 4, the first full day of the conference. Conclusions from Changing Tack, the final output of The Regeneration Roadmap, were top of mind as I did so.

A New Triple Bottom Line
A New Triple Bottom Line

This post first appeared on CSRWire on January 13, 2012.As we dive into the new year and face up to the challenges ahead, I am reminded of the fundamental reason so many of us are working in this area. We came to do more good, though we often find most of our time is spent doing less harm.CSR organizations are increasingly tasked to cover both. And we will have to come up with new approaches to scale doing less harm and doing more good at the same time.The Cost of IncrementalismWhat is taking so long? Looking at just one aspect of CSR, corporate philanthropy, we see lack of results from scale — from the ReachScale site:

Storytelling the Overriding Theme on Final Day of SB '13
Storytelling the Overriding Theme on Final Day of SB '13

MARKETING AND COMMS - There was hardly an empty seat in the house for Jonah Sachs’ “crash course in masterful storytelling.” Attendees learned the history of oral tradition and why humans have used stories to take in and share information for thousands of years. Sachs shared a five-part strategy to telling stories that get shared and let everyone in the room practice telling their own stories using characters and morals that illustrated underlying core values. The session concluded with examples of successful story-based marketing campaigns, brand gifts and an overview on brand archetypes.

Raucous Debate, Product Innovations, Women, Biodiversity Celebrated in Sessions on SB '13 Day Three
Raucous Debate, Product Innovations, Women, Biodiversity Celebrated in Sessions on SB '13 Day Three

BLOG - The afternoon of day three at SB ’13 continued with more insightful discussions covering an array of timely topics.

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SB '13, Day 3: Startups, Multinationals Alike Showcase Game-Changing Innovations
SB '13, Day 3: Startups, Multinationals Alike Showcase Game-Changing Innovations

PRODUCT, SERVICE & DESIGN INNOVATION - On Wednesday, day three of the SB’13 conference, the morning plenary presentations explored some of the more fascinating ways innovation is manifesting itself through entrepreneurs and large businesses alike. Moderator Annie Longsworth, CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi S, reminded the audience that innovation is tough — you need to be willing to fail if you want to succeed, and asserted that “We are at our greatest need, collectively. If there ever was a time for innovation, it is now.”

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