Japan's "kaizen" philosophy, which focuses on fostering employee-driven process improvements, is a natural fit for companies looking to go green, write Glen Staton and Kay Winokur. Workers understand their own workflow and environment and can often spot easy and cheap steps to save energy, water and other resources. "In general, a kaizen team should generate process-improvement ideas that can be quickly implemented with little or no expense," Staton and Winokur write.
Procter & Gamble global sustainability chief Len Sauers has earned a reputation for being one of the most optimistic men in the business. Still, he says, it's proving tough to sell green products when only a fraction of consumers are willing to accept more expensive or less functional products. "If we want to make meaningful advances here, we have to design and develop and market products that enable consumers to be sustainable, but we can't ask them for tradeoffs," he says.
For marketers, CSR reports are the gift that keeps on giving, writes Christian Hicks. A well-run strategy allows marketers to keep spinning off nuggets of their firm's CSR report for a full year, ensuring a constant pipeline of eco-friendly messaging. "Make the most of what you have by managing your editorial calendar with an eye on repurposing content," Hicks advises.
With the right tools and strategy, most companies can persuade 95% of their workers to get involved with CSR efforts, writes SmartBrief on Sustainability editor Jennifer Hicks. Software tools such as the AngelPoints platform can help companies integrate their CSR targets with employees' personal goals, generating near-unanimous buy-in. "Imagine the buy-in, the passion to work toward a common goal -- and the benefits that could result," Hicks writes.
Recruitment and CSR are two sides of the same coin, says AnnMarie Gulian, global hiring chief at Campbell Soup. Human resource teams need to adopt green-business practices that reflect their company's broader environmental efforts if they wish to attract workers capable of delivering on that commitment, Gulian explains. "If we continue to keep our people engaged, we should be able to advance our commitment to sustainability and corporate responsibility," she says.