Green transformation is a common word that is spoken and heard in the business environment in recent times. A lot of focus has been put on this subject in the past decade and many organisations have been wrestling to become greener and to transform their businesses to become truly sustainable.
So, what is a Green Transformation?
Green transformation is the method of transforming the way business happens today to generate growth while safeguarding resources, transformation effective at process, operation, product, business model and culture level.
In today’s age, almost every brand and every large and SMEs are talking about the wellbeing of the climate and transitioning their business processes to be sustainable. Sustainability is here to stay and is revamping the competitive edge. But in order to become sustainable are businesses really ready for the change?
There are three key elements that businesses need to understand about green transformation.
1. Change Management
Becoming a sustainable organisation is not going to happen overnight. It should be seen as an opportunity to change and make a difference. However, change can be seen as a very scary concept, but this doesn’t necessarily mean it’s negative. It all depends on how it is managed. That’s where the “change management” concept is highlighted, seen as the pathway to approach the transformation of an organisation’s technologies, processes and culture. The sole purpose of change management is to make change adaptable and not unbearable for people.
2. Technology Investment
Technology will play a pivotal role for an organisation that is wanting to transition to become more sustainable, as it will aid in transforming. Therefore, leveraging new tools and technologies is critical. Organisations need to focus on a technology investment strategy that will enable them to modernise their core systems.
3. Company Culture
Now if change needs to be successful it needs to be communicated, implemented, documented and evaluated to see the result. However, the most important factor is to implement and communicate this message in your core company values and culture. You need to embed the values, knowledge and benefits of becoming a sustainable company and why it is essential. Thus, educating your employees is the foundation of any business on green transformation and will be one of the key drivers for your organisation to a successful green transformation.
Why become Green?
Most industries across the globe are faced with demands from customers, employees, legislators, institutional investors, and other stakeholders to become more sustainable. This has put pressure on businesses to take account of their responsibilities relating to climate, environment and people, and has resulted in changing the business environment. Key decision makers are required to bring forth the green agenda from their business periphery to the core, no matter how demanding and challenging it may be to implement.
Let’s look at some of the benefits of going green:
1. Enhanced brand identity
It is vital to have a green approach to business operations to deliver the brand promise. People take into consideration companies’ green efforts and care for the planet, which creates a polished image leading to success for the business.
2. Improved productivity
Productivity is something every company strives for as it improves efficiency and results in enormous savings. By implementing green practices, productivity is easier to perform by various methods.
3. Reduce waste and decrease costs
Green initiatives are helping businesses to avoid wasteful and unsustainable habits as well as added costs. Hence, Initiatives such as energy consumption, utility costs, water disposal and paper reduction have proven to be mutually benefiting businesses and the planet.
4. Increased investment opportunity
For a business going green, it is not just about creating credibility, it’s about positioning themselves for better investment possibilities. If a brand’s environmental impact is visible, investors can trust the brand as well as see that as an important criterion for evaluation.
5. Employee morale satisfaction
Employees are the brand ambassadors for any brand, having ethical and environmental tendencies will increase satisfaction and loyalty. Creating a sustainability friendly environment will boost recruitment, retention, mental well-being and morale of employees.
How to Drive a Successful Green Transformation?
While the vision for green transformation is clear, the how-to of green transformation is less obvious. Therefore, to drive a smooth green transformation a company needs to create competitive advantage by using smart technology. Here are three factors that will highly influence a positive transformation:
1. Sustainability Strategy Anchoring
An organisation should have a concise strategy planned out understanding the reasons on why they are wanting to go green and how this is going to be achieved. Also, the impact of the change on the business’s purpose, processes, stakeholders and long-term value creation.
The strategy must be devised so becoming sustainable provides a source for durable competitive advantage. Therefore, analysing the current business model is essential to understand its degree of sustainability objective. This assessment will help to reveal the opportunities to enhance the societal and environmental benefits that the company can generate, but also boost competitive advantage by improving the resilience of its business model. They should further focus on their stakeholders and not only on investors. Understanding the impact, it will have on the stakeholders now and in the future will help to outline long term business success. Having a clear outline of priorities
2. Capture Business Values
Companies that have embraced sustainability within their business processes and company culture have outperformed competitors financially. However, capturing the value of green transformation can be challenging. Therefore, the company should gather data by tracking, measuring and analysing on how becoming sustainable is impacting their organisations on source of value, for example, how it impacts brand equity, market share, operational costs, sales, revenue, etc.
3. Embed Sustainability in Company’s Culture
Regardless of what industry an organisation operates in, businesses are becoming aware of the fact that not only is green transformation an opportunity it is also an important source of sustainable competitive advantage and stakeholder management. Therefore, businesses strive to develop a culture of sustainability, and since the employees shape a company’s culture, organisations should focus on helping their employees understand the fundamentals of sustainability. This will help the organisation to adapt to green transformation efficiently.
So, to be successful in green transformation the fundamental change needs to occur in mindsets. Organisation leaders need to change their business model in order to adapt sustainable processes and engage their employees to build sustainability culture by leveraging new tools and technologies. Leaders that fail to make green transformation part of their business model, are likely to lose the opportunity of competing in the market.
How 2030 Builders help
2030 Builders build sustainable mindsets and businesses for the future, by taking sustainability from knowing to doing. 2030 Builders’ sustainability engagement platform helps companies implement sustainability in organisational culture through employee engagement. Assess where you are in your journey, and let us maximise your sustainability impact. With our customisable, convenient and competitive solution, your organisation can start the sustainability transformation today.
Interested? Then let’s connect and talk about how to embed sustainability in your organisation.