The Emerging Corporate Sustainability Role
Over the course of the last 20 years when the terms Sustainability and CSR were first introduced to companies, organizational teams have undergone multiple shifts, urging them to slowly but steadily reevaluate their strategic objectives and goals in order to cope with real challenges on Sustainability. Transformation has been required to be made so that sustainability and CSR departments operate in such matters that reflect the evolution in sustainability both internally and externally.
According to recent researches, sustainability practitioners are not entitled to simply lead and manage projects so that their company is positioned as sustainable and environmentally responsible but have themselves positioned as leaders in the field. That emerging job role states that Sustainability leaders are capable of driving their companies’ initiatives to enhance the sustainability impacts in their operations and value chain. There is a mandate to embed sustainability so that it is in compliance with social and corporate culture; it is financially beneficial whereas it constantly meets the stakeholders’ concerns. The role of Sustainability practitioner evolves in the most fundamental way meaning that professionals need to shift from an operational behavior to a more strategical focus on how to embed sustainable contexts within the organizations.
What can they do
Sustainability directors have to involve all departments and integrate sustainability across business teams within the organization in order to improve sustainable performance and add value to business segments. Foremost, what it is noted in terms of holistic collaboration when it comes to a truly successful sustainability strategy is the direct involvement of the board of directors. It appears that the role of sustainability leader is not one-dimensional but it is wider and more strategical than ever. On that note, the emerging corporate sustainability role implies that the approach on handling the particular job description has to be dynamic and constantly applicable to the requirements and priorities of the organization. During this evolving process, sustainability practitioners need to be proactive and put themselves into the situation of identifying what skills and competencies have to be advanced to become more impactful.
It appears that the role and actions of sustainability professionals have to be defined on a long term which means they constantly re-evaluate their skill-sets, knowledge and experience to be always competitive among the sustainability group of leaders.
If you aim to break into this field and identify the current needs to evolve your sustainability profession, the Center for Sustainability & Excellence (CSE) offers you the globally recognized and challenging Certified Sustainability Practitioner Program that is hosted annually around the world – N.York, Houston, Atlanta, Toronto, London, Dubai, among other cities. Check them out here.
For a more flexible and affordable education, the Silicon Valley awarded Sustainability Academy offers specialized education on hot issues of the field! Check the online courses here.