Integrating corporate sustainability in strategic management

Norbert Bol

Based on a literature review of 114 peer-reviewed scientific journal articles it shows that sustainability is an important topic for managers but they just rarely consider it in strategic management. Many companies therefore still lack a strategic approach to integrating corporate sustainability into strategy. In my opinion the starting point in the integration of corporate sustainability in strategic management is manager attitude and behaviour.

Green management performance

Norbert Bol

In the January 2017 issue of the Journal of Cleaner Production there is a study that has investigated the relationship between green management and the performance of Italian firms. The study shows that the relationship between green management and performance is U-shaped. The U-shaped performance makes clear that green initiatives can lead to a lower performance if there is not a comprehensive environmental management system.

Managing sustainability perspectives

Norbert Bol

Therefore most organizations have a seperate policy on sustainability or corporate responsibility, which enable them to manage and to act more effectively. Sustainability on a strategic or company level is often difficult to define, measure and manage. To measure and manage sustainability more effectively it can be helpful to introduce the concept of Corporate Stakeholder Responsibility (CStR). Journal of Management, 0149206315569311.

Green management performance

Norbert Bol

In the January 2017 edition of the Journal of Cleaner Production there is a study that has investigated the relationship between green management and the performance of Italian firms. The study shows that the relationship between green management and performance is U-shaped. The U-shaped performance makes clear that green initiatives can lead to a lower performance if there is not a comprehensive environmental management system.

At what speed do we close the green finance gap?

Norbert Bol

For example banks have strengthened their regulation, supervision and risk management under Basel III (an internationally agreed set of measures developed by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision) with more emphasis on liquidity.

Technology and sustainability optimism

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Strategy Sustainability Innovation Learning Technology NarrativeInnovative sustainable technology is considered to be positively contributing to sustainability.

Sustainable futures based on Shakespeare

Norbert Bol

Last week I wrote about the use of narratives in strategic foresight using the speeches of Steve Jobs as examples (see last week’s blog ). Strategic Management Innovation Learning Narrative Strategic Foresight Strategy Sustainability

Strategic foresight: learning from Steve Jobs

Norbert Bol

The combination of vision and taking appropriate actions made him a great example of a discipline which is called strategic foresight. The best way to make sense of strategic foresight is by looking at the narratives that are being used (Sarpong et al.,

Green finance through shared savings

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Collaboration Finance Green Investment Real Estate SharedSavings Strategy Sustainability TechnologyLast week I wrote about the “ green finance gap “, where investments in green technology suffer from a lack of financial resources and less attractive risk-return expectations compared to other investments.

A happy and healthy 2019! Making sustainable choices

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Innovation Strategy Sustainability SustainnovateAt the start of 2019 I wish everyone a happy and healthy 2019! Whatever in life we are planning to do to be happy and healthy, we have different options to choose when we are buying a product or a service.

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Successful sustainability

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Innovation Leadership Learning Strategy SustainabilityOn our way to becoming a green economy, we need products and services that have a positive impact on the environment and society.

Sharing is caring?

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Business Innovation Social Media Sustainability SustainnovateDo companies in the sharing economy care more about sustainability than companies in the traditional economy?

Sustainable consumption to be happy and healthy?

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Economy Happiness Innovation SustainabilityGrowing consumption does not increase happiness or health! In industrialized countries there is no increase in happiness or health when consumption grows (Fanning et al., 2019). From a sustainability perspective this can be an important finding as global human consumption today is already outstripping what the planet can reproduce.

Who should invest in CleanTech in the supply chain?

Norbert Bol

In modern supply chain management, sustainable supply chains are often seen as profitable supply chains. Strategic Management Business Finance Innovation Investment SupplyChain Sustainability TechnologyMore use of clean technologies in supply chains significantly reduce carbon- and other greenhouse gas emissions. However the cost of investment in clean technology is substantial.

Passing 100 Strategy Blogs: Innovation for sustainability is complex but has a global interest.

Norbert Bol

The main idea was to explore the possibilities of blogging about a topic that I find very intriguing, which is: “how to manage innovation for sustainability”? A topic that is relevant for all of us, regardless if we are a manager, an employee, a consumer or an investor.

Is sustainability-centered marketing the way ahead?

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Business Co-Creation Marketing SustainabilityA sustainability-centered marketing strategy is not leading to superior customer-brand relationships and fi rm performance. In general this is the outcome of a recent study by Mena et al. 2019) where they have compared three marketing strategies: Market-driven strategy with a focus on customers, employees and suppliers.

How sustainable consumption relates to knowledge, seriousness and culture

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Consumption Economy Marketing Strategy SustainabilityAs we probably all know, we are currently consuming more than the planet can reproduce. The annual Earth Overshoot Day is happening sooner every year. Last year this day was 1 August.

Individual compentences for sustainable entrepreneurship and innovation

Norbert Bol

Six sustainability competences can be identified: Strategic management competence and action competence : the ability to collectively design projects, implement interventions, transitions, and strategies for sustainable development practices and the ability to actively involve oneself in responsible actions for the improvement of the sustainability of social ecological systems. They seem to integrate normative dimensions into other strategic, action and foresighted competences.

Is finance too low-tech to support sustainability innovations?

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Collaboration Finance SustainabilityIn the october edition of Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Christensen et al. 2018) conclude that they were surprised about the low-tech financial decision rules that are being applied to green office investments.

Successful office investments in disruptive times

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Innovation PropTech Real Estate Sustainability TechnologyLast week I gave a short presentation at the VIP Europe Conference of IREI in Amsterdam about the impact of innovation, technology and sustainability on office investments in the Netherlands. In this blog I want to share the main content my presentation in a more aggregated way. My key message is: Technology and sustainability have a positive impact on institutional office investments.

The importance of managing secondary stakeholders and the role of social media

Norbert Bol

Managing the increasing number of stakeholders, is of course a challenge for companies. Strategic Management Communication Innovation Leadership Social Media SustainabilityLast week I wrote in StrategyBlogs that bridging the gap between strategy formulation and strategy implementation is possible through a true dialogue with your stakeholders. In the current edition of Business Horizons there is an interesting article about secondary stakeholders and their growing influence.

Are you prepared for the Industry 4.0? How you can #HackYourWayIn

Norbert Bol

Traditionally opposing ideas are managed by seeking compromises or by choosing one idea at the expense of the other. Strategic Management Creativity Education Innovation Learning Sustainability

Gamification: fun for everyone?

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Creativity Innovation Learning SustainabilityGamification has become a popular phenomenon in education, business, government and science. Introducing fun-game activities in these real life situations, fits within the idea of an experience oriented economy.

5 Advantages of Strategy Statements with Simple Language

BrainZooming

It’s worth a few minutes (if you haven’t done it recently) to crack open your strategic plan and read your strategy statements. If you weren’t involved in putting the strategic plan together, would YOU be able to understand the strategy statements?

Creative and critical thinking in innovation

Norbert Bol

Design thinking was suggested, but also it was suggested that the issues in our current economy should not be thought of as problems to be solved, but should be approached as conditions to be managed as if they were a chronic disease.

Return on investing in social sustainability

Norbert Bol

In the November edition of the Strategic Management Journal Fosfuri et al. Strategic Management Journal., Strategic Management CSR Finance SustainabilityNowadays, many companies engage in social causes that are aligned with the social concerns of their customers. In the Strategy Blog “ Business sustainability and cost of equity ” it was shown that social sustainability has a more indirect effect to business performance.

Is the Circular Economy lost in transition?

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Economy Innovation Sustainability SustainnovateNext week is the Dutch Circular Economy Week.

7 hurdles that prevent breakthrough sustainable innovations. How clients can help to overcome these hurdles!

Norbert Bol

Strategic ManagementMost companies nowadays understand the need to become more sustainable. In general it is fair to say that companies are making progress and have a positive intention to become more sustainable. So called breakthrough sustainability innovations are however scarce. Mostly because these type of innovations are complex and can not be done by one company alone or by a new startup. So what are the hurdles that prevent breakthrough sustainable innovations?

The future of innovation

Norbert Bol

Although there were many topics discussed at the World Economic Forum that relate to the topics that are used in Strategy Blogs, I would like to share two interesting discussions about innovation, which are: Maintaining innovation and the Strategic Update: The Future of Innovation.

What is your approach to strategy? Two quotes on change give direction

Eddielogic

Every strategist and every business needs to make up his own guiding theme that gives him direction in the wide field … Continue reading → Quote Strategic Management Thinkers change strategic thinkers

Innovation in governments: Far Horizons?

Norbert Bol

Public Management Review , 1-11. Strategic Management Collaboration Innovation Strategy SustainabilityThe blog “ the sustainability innovation paradox ” triggered quite some discussions the last few weeks on the role of governments in innovations.

Apathy, Ambivalence and Annoyance in co-creation and gamification

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Blog Co-Creation Collaboration Innovation MarketingIn this Strategy Blog I follow up on the topic of gamification. Specifically where potential users do not engage, because of their apathy, ambivalence or annoyance.

Degrowth is more than an Oxymoron?

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Sustainability Innovation EconomyDegrowth, or De-Growth, is from a language perspective an oxymoron.

CEO’s who are blogging about strategy

Norbert Bol

In this Strategy Blog I would like to share with you the blogs of CEO’s that I follow because they also discuss strategic management issues. If you have additions to this list of CEO’s who blog about strategic management issues please let me know. Strategic Management Communication Leadership Marketing Social Media Strategy

How we justify our (un)sustainability

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management CSR Innovation Learning Sustainability SustainnovateDuring the last few weeks I have had interesting discussions about the question: “are we doing enough to create a sustainable future?” ” The discussions were interesting because they were all very open in the first place. I also found that people are not only willing to contribute but are also willing to share their contributions with me and others.

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Are you too busy to improve?

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Collaboration Innovation Leadership Learning OrganizationLast week I wrote about how we can learn to innovate by learning from haute cuisine chefs.

Towards true sustainability

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Collaboration Innovation Leadership Sustainability SustainnovateWhen are we truly sustainable? That is an inspiring question. As human beings we all aspire a healthy, happy and prosperous life for ourselves and for the next generations.

Boosting creativity and innovation

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Innovation Leadership StrategyBoosting creativity and innovation. When we want to boost creativity and innovation in an organization, there is not only a need for creative people but there is also the need for an organization supporting an innovative culture (see also the blog: Innovation is built on the desire for success ). A recent study towards the personal factors of creativity and innovation (da Costa et al.,

Stretching on the playground

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Innovation Learning SustainnovateThis week is the start of the Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven, where 2500 designers present their ideas, experiments and solutions. The theme of the event is “Stretch”, to encourage both designers and the public to get involved with each other and to break out of their comfort zone. Everybody has different comfort zones depending on the subject and circumstances.

Looking for words about the future of sustainability

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management CSR Leadership SustainabilityReporting on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and sustainability has grown exponentially. The quality of the reporting has also improved, including historical information and forward-looking statements. A recent study by Aiezza (2015 in press) shows that there is still a strong bias towards optimistic trends when it comes to reporting on sustainability issues.

Innovation is built on the desire for success

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Innovation Leadership StrategyTo create innovations it is probably true that our desire for success should be greater than our fear of failure. At the same time we should have the abilty not be afraid to fail but instead have the ability to learn from our mistakes. Many innovations are the fruitful result of trial and error. Error or failure are part of the process.

The impact of sustainability and innovation on business performance

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management CSR Innovation SustainabilityThere is scientific evidence that companies with a strong commitment to innovation and sustainability outperform competitors with lower commitments. In the International Business Review of October 2015 the researchers Costa, Lages & Hortinha show that the relationship between innovation, sustainability and business performance is more complex.

Attune to the unusual!

Norbert Bol

Strategic Management Creativity Innovation SustainabilityLast week during the 48th World Economic Forum in Davos-Klosters in Switzerland there was plenty of attention for the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. In specific there was a call for accelerating innovation to become more sustainable, because at the current pace of innovation today we will not achieve these goals in time.