Leadership

Exemplary cases of sustainability leadership and intrapreneurship, and the qualities, ethical principles and/or dilemmas inherent within them.

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Transformational Leadership in Action ... and In Transition

Last week, over 2,000 representatives from our global community of sustainability practitioners, brand strategists, product and service innovators, thought leaders and other change-makers converged at SB’18 Vancouver to share their latest insights on a multitude of themes pertinent to all of those committed to improving business around the world. Here, we dig into a topic at the heart of all lasting change: Transformational leadership.

Caesars Makes Industry-Leading Commitment to Reduce Carbon Emissions by 95%

On Wednesday, Caesars Entertainment Corporation, the world's most diversified casino-entertainment provider, announced it has set science-based targets to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the company and throughout its supply chain. The ambitious goals demonstrate Caesars’ ongoing commitment to fighting climate change and mitigating long-term risk.

Growing the Next Generation of Change Agents to Tackle Today’s ‘Wicked’ Problems

The world is complex and interconnected. When we pull one lever in a system, it ripples throughout. Pull the right levers and you can solve some of the most complex problems, pull the wrong one and it can be disastrous. This is why it is critical to take a systems approach when solving complex, or what Sally Uren, CEO at Forum of the Future, calls “wicked” problems.

Kingfisher Continues on Path to Net Positive, Puts Customers at Heart of 2025 Goals

European home improvement company Kingfisher has set out ambitious sustainability targets for the next seven years – the latest stage of its journey to become a net positive business by 2050.

SoulBuffalo Gets Execs Out from Behind Desks to See Their Impacts on the World

As we at Sustainable Brands — and anyone working to rectify the damage people have done to the planet — are well aware, it's all too easy to ignore pressing social and environmental issues if their effects can’t be seen or felt in our daily lives. After a life-altering excursion across three continents, SoulBuffalo CEO and founder Dave Ford was determined to find a way to change this, by taking those just as responsible for causing as solving many of these issues — global corporate decision-makers — out into the wild to experience the effects of their business decisions with their own senses.

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4 Ways CEOs Can Truly Drive Purpose in Companies

This is the ninth in a series of articles examining how business leaders and companies can transform their corporate culture in order to succeed in the midst of the impending Purpose Revolution. Find links to the full series below.

New Clif Bar Scholarship Alleviates Debt to Help College Seniors Pursue Purposeful Careers

Clif Bar & Company attributes its success to “not selling out” when the owners walked away from a $120 million buyout offer in 2000.

5 Teens’ Hunger Relief Projects Earn $10-50K Through New General Mills Program

By 2050 there will be over 9 billion people on the planet, and food production will have to increase by as much as 70 percent to feed everyone. We are already struggling to feed everyone today, even in America.

Purpose Is Becoming More Critical to Attract, Retain Employees

A new report has found that more than 1 in 4 British managers would take a pay cut for a purpose-led job, a third would leave their job if the company’s overall purpose was unclear, and more than half would leave if their company’s values and purpose did not align with their own. Purposeful leadership is no longer a ‘luxury’ CSR exercise — its becoming critical to staff engagement and commercial resilience.

Canadian SMEs Leading the Way in Sustainability, But Limited by Capacity

New research from the University of Waterloo suggests that small businesses have enormous potential to advance sustainability in Canada. 86% of SMEs surveyed think that sustainability is important, and more than half have taken steps to make their practices more socially and environmentally-friendly.

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When You Think ‘Sustainable and Ethical Returns,’ Think Female Leaders

Larry Fink’s recent clarion call to capitalism that managing “environmental, social,and governance (ESG) matters demonstrates the leadership and good governance that is so essential to sustainable growth” should not fall on deaf CEO ears.

New REI Product Standards Raise Sustainability Bar for Outdoor, Retail Industries

Smack in the middle of the third year of its groundbreaking #OptOutside campaign, which began with a bold stand against the shopping rampage of Black Friday and has expanded into a global movement to empower its customers to embrace the great outdoors, REI Co-op today debuted a set of product standards aimed at elevating sustainability across the retail and

Report: Unilever, Tesla, Nestlé Among Biggest Corporate Advocates for Climate Policy

Companies including Apple, Google and IKEA earned top spots in a new ranking of the top 20 business leaders calling for more ambitious climate policy across the globe. To make the A-List of Climate Policy Engagement, companies must showcase sectoral leadership, be vocal in calling for ambitious policies and align these calls with their own strategic activities.

3 Things CEOs Must Understand When Pivoting to Purpose

Dear CEO, I know it’s lonely at the top. Each day you contend with a boiling stew of global competition, digital transformation, labor issues and challenging board members, to name a few. You walk this tightrope while hewing to a notion of shareholder primacy that has guided you throughout your career — the need to maximize financial profits and consider shareholders above all other stakeholders. And now, here comes society nipping at your heels, demanding that you incorporate social purpose into your corporation.

Business Has Never Been More Critical in Advancing Gender Equality

The adage, “behind every great man, there is a great woman,” has officially — and irretrievably — been relegated to the history books. In its place comes the understanding that behind every woman is a powerful and growing network of women who have, and are helping to, pave the way. When I joined Ceres more than a decade ago, I was privileged to experience firsthand the power of working under a female CEO and a gender-balanced leadership team. Today, even as the organization has quintupled in size, Ceres maintains this gender parity.

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Corporate Sustainability Practitioners: Roles Have Changed — Has Your Job Description?

“If life were easy, it wouldn’t be difficult.” — Kermit the Frog As a sustainability professional, I am drawn to this Muppet wisdom. Over the many years I’ve worked in the field as an advisor and strategist, I’ve witnessed a slow but steady awakening on the part of organizations to the real challenges of long-term sustainability. It takes intention, commitment – and pivots.

Report: Businesses Failing to Develop Leaders Equipped for Social, Environmental Threats

Are businesses ready to respond to the existential threats posed by social and environmental issues such as wealth inequality and climate change? Not yet, it seems. A new report from the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) has found that businesses need to “develop leadership to respond to the unprecedented changes brought by the Fourth Industrial Revolution,” or miss out on the opportunities presented by new technologies and innovations.

3 Environmental Lawsuits That Have Helped Society

For Big Oil and lobbyists of legislative bodies, money talks. Unfortunately, keeping investors and corporate bigwigs happy often takes precedence over any environmental concerns. Trying to effect real change for the good of the environment can seem impossible at times given the vast amount of power in play.

What We Can Learn from The Dutch City Of Nijmegen, This Year’s European Green Capital

Right now, almost four billion people live in a city somewhere in the world. By the middle of this century, that number is set to jump by a staggering 2.5 billion, with 90 percent of that growth happening in cities located in Asia and Africa. However, with many cities doubling in size every 15 to 20 years, our urban environments currently lack the resources necessary to adapt to the forces of urbanization. Our cities will need to accommodate spiraling numbers of people, servicing their needs and stimulating trade and investment to create jobs, all within the constraints imposed by mega-challenges, such as climate change, poverty and employment. In Europe, two-thirds of people already live in cities.

Trending: Local, National Governments Get Real About Creating Circular, Low-Carbon Future

Though the private sector has largely been leading the charge against climate change as of late, local and national governments are starting to step up to the plate to further catalyze the shift to a more sustainable economy. As the UK and EU ramp up efforts to slash plastics pollution, the Scottish government has announced plans to impose a ban on the manufacture and sale of plastic-stemmed cotton swabs. Once in place, the ban is expected to reduce Scotland’s marine plastic pollution by a staggering 50 percent.

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