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Transcript

The Roadmap for your SME

Sustainable SMEs Course

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Module to be defined with collaborators

After today, we will be able to:

Understand the structure of this course

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Recognize the importance of SMEs within Sustainable Development

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List the main sustainability issues of our time

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The SME Sustainability Roadmap has 5 steps:

The Manager understands the role of SMEs and their impacts on the world.

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This was covered in Module 3: Understanding Your Impact!

An Internal Working Group analyzes the impacts of the company and possible solutions.

This is the methodology part 1, and it will be covered in this module.

The manager creates an action plan with the working group.

This is the methodology part 2, and it will be covered in this module.

Employees and the manager commit to a “sustainable process agreement” and KPIs

This is the methodology part 3, and it will be covered in this module.

The company communicates its sustainability agenda internally and externally

This is about the next steps of our SME methodology, and it will be covered in Module 5.

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Step 1: Assessing your company’s impacts

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Step 2:
Co-developing your action plan

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Step 3:
Acting on
your plan

Here are today's objectives:

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Approaching sustainability means chosing the most relevant impacts to tackle, and we will practice how to align them with SDGs and potential solutions.

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Create an Internal Working Group

The Internal Working Group (IWG) is crucial to organizing your employees as resources for your company's sustainability efforts.

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Identify the steps to a sustainability program

We will cover the steps of a sustainability roadmap, starting with an overview and then going deeply into the methodology.

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Align priority impacts with SDGs and solutions

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Methodology Part 1

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Analyzing the Issues

Involving your employees is crucial to the success of a sustainability strategy as an SME.

An internal working group (IWG) built specifically for sustainability of the company can help organize interested employees to take part in this.

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Creating an Internal Working Group (IWG)

IWG

An internal working group is voluntary, and managers can put them together by explaining to employees the benefits of sustainability for the company.

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Creating an Internal Working Group (IWG)

IWG

Educating Employees on the Benefits


As we learned a bit in Module 2, a sustainability-driven SME can set itself apart from the competition, gain and keep clients, and mitigate risk. In addition, employees would benefit from joining the internal working group because they would get to be more involved in company strategy and propose and act on their ideas.

The first task of the group is to define the stakeholders

of the company.

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Defining Stakeholders

Source: SCG

Once the stakeholders are defined, the IWG is to have a discussion with the stakeholders on the major sustainability issues related to the company and analyze them from two angles:

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Analyzing the Issues

STRENGTHS

AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT

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There is a list of 10 accountability and sustainability issues that can be analyzed:

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Analyzing the Issues

Health & Safety

Relationships with Suppliers

External Dialogues

Energy Consumption

Pollution

Transportation Impacts

Internal Dialogues

Employee Training

Non Discrimination

Parity

Health and safety that concerns production, transport, products and product usage

This includes electricity, fuel, heating, for offices, production processes and product usage

Pollution produced and not perfectly treated: waste/air, water, soil, packaging, non-recycled waste, etc.

Fairness and treatment of suppliers in purchasing and procurement processes

External dialogues with local and territorial actors

Internal dialogues on the expectations of the company and the expectations of customers, suppliers, local residents and partners

Training of employees to enable their professional development

Concerning human rights, social inequalities, and race

Gender balances and women empowerment

Direct and indirect impacts of transport used in the value chain


The working group will have to ask concrete questions about each issue to label each one as:

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Analyzing the Issues

Health & Safety

Relationships with Suppliers

External Dialogues

Energy Consumption

Pollution

Transportation Impacts

Internal Dialogues

Employee Training

Non Discrimination

Parity

STRENGTH

AREA FOR IMPROVEMENT

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Health and safety that concerns production, transport, products and product usage

This includes electricity, fuel, heating, for offices, production processes and product usage

Pollution produced and not perfectly treated: waste/air, water, soil, packaging, non-recycled waste, etc.

Fairness and treatment of suppliers in purchasing and procurement processes

External dialogues with local and territorial actors

Internal dialogues on the expectations of the company and the expectations of customers, suppliers, local residents and partners

Training of employees to enable their professional development

Concerning human rights, social inequalities, and race

Gender balances and women empowerment

Direct and indirect impacts of transport used in the value chain


Then 3-5 of the issues under "Areas for Improvement" should be labelled as:

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Analyzing the Issues

Health & Safety

Relationships with Suppliers

External Dialogues

Energy Consumption

Pollution

Transportation Impacts

Internal Dialogues

Employee Training

Non Discrimination

Parity

PRIORITY ISSUE

Health and safety that concerns production, transport, products and product usage

This includes electricity, fuel, heating, for offices, production processes and product usage

Pollution produced and not perfectly treated: waste/air, water, soil, packaging, non-recycled waste, etc.

Fairness and treatment of suppliers in purchasing and procurement processes

External dialogues with local and territorial actors

Internal dialogues on the expectations of the company and the expectations of customers, suppliers, local residents and partners

Training of employees to enable their professional development

Concerning human rights, social inequalities, and race

Gender balances and women empowerment

Direct and indirect impacts of transport used in the value chain


Next, the working group and manager can align each of the priority impacts with a Sustainable Development Goal.

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Aligning with the SDGs

To do this, take a look at your priority impacts and all of the SDG themes and goals. You can decide which goal resonates with the priority impacts and your company the most.

Note: The relationships may not always be obvious, and multiple impacts and SDGs may overlap.

The SDGs

Back

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As a reminder, the Sustainable Development Goals are a set of 17 goals for 2030 established by the United Nations.

These goals make up the international framework that brings countries, cities, companies, and NGOs together for a more sustainable future.

Let’s go through some examples of how different SMEs might align themselves with the SDGs.

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Aligning with the SDGs

We will show you different SMEs’ chosen priority impacts. Your job is to click on a SDG that you think most aligns with the priority impact shown.

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Aligning with the SDGs: Game

Ready to start?

We will show you different SMEs’ chosen priority impacts. Your job is to click on a SDG that you think most aligns with the priority impact shown.

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Aligning with the SDGs: Game

Type of Company:
A Tourism Agency

Priority impact:
The negative economic effect large tourism companies have on the local people.

We will show you different SMEs’ chosen priority impacts. Your job is to click on a SDG that you think most aligns with the priority impact shown.

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Aligning with the SDGs: Game

Type of Company:
A Tourism Agency

Priority impact:
The negative economic effect large tourism companies have on the local people.

GREAT!

SDG 8 is a great one to align with here because large companies are taking business away from the local population.

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Aligning with the SDGs: Game

Type of Company:
A Tourism Agency

Priority impact:
The negative economic effect large tourism companies have on the local people.

PERHAPS...

There's no exact answer, but we suggest that SDG 8 is a great one to align with here because large companies are taking business away from the local population.

We will show you different SMEs’ chosen priority impacts. Your job is to click on a SDG that you think most aligns with the priority impact shown.

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Aligning with the SDGs: Game

Type of Company:
Local Restaurant Chain

Priority impact:
The large amounts of food waste.

We will show you different SMEs’ chosen priority impacts. Your job is to click on a SDG that you think most aligns with the priority impact shown.

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Aligning with the SDGs: Game

GREAT!

SDGs 2 & 12 are important in this case. Did you know that 13.8% of food is lost in supply chains from harvesting to processing? That’s even before the food is brought to the restaurant to be cooked and served.

Type of Company:
Local Restaurant Chain

Priority impact:
The large amounts of food waste.

We will show you different SMEs’ chosen priority impacts. Your job is to click on a SDG that you think most aligns with the priority impact shown.

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Aligning with the SDGs: Game

PERHAPS...

SDGs 2 & 12 are important in this case. Did you know that 13.8% of food is lost in supply chains from harvesting to processing? That’s even before the food is brought to the restaurant to be cooked and served.

Type of Company:
Local Restaurant Chain

Priority impact:
The large amounts of food waste.

We will show you different SMEs’ chosen priority impacts. Your job is to click on a SDG that you think most aligns with the priority impact shown.

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Aligning with the SDGs: Game

Type of Company:
A Fabric Printing Company

Priority impact:
The chemicals used to dye the fabrics are unsafe for workers and consumers.

We will show you different SMEs’ chosen priority impacts. Your job is to click on a SDG that you think most aligns with the priority impact shown.

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Aligning with the SDGs: Game

GREAT!

Harmful chemicals directly impact the health of workers and potentially consumers, and it can be argued that these chemicals might also affect local water supplies depending on how they are used and disposed of.

Type of Company:
A Fabric Printing Company

Priority impact:
The chemicals used to dye the fabrics are unsafe for workers and consumers.

We will show you different SMEs’ chosen priority impacts. Your job is to click on a SDG that you think most aligns with the priority impact shown.

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Aligning with the SDGs: Game

PERHAPS...

Type of Company:
A Fabric Printing Company

Priority impact:
The chemicals used to dye the fabrics are unsafe for workers and consumers.

SDGs 3 & 6 are relevant here because harmful chemicals directly impact the health of workers and potentially consumers, and it can be argued that these chemicals might also affect local water supplies depending on how they are used and disposed of.

We will show you different SMEs’ chosen priority impacts. Your job is to click on a SDG that you think most aligns with the priority impact shown.

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Methodology Part 2

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Developing Solutions

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Once the priority impacts and SDGs are chosen, your company is ready to propose solutions towards the main issues chosen. This involves the IWG as well as extending the call for innovations, changes and concrete ideas to other employees.

Solutions are in the hands of the employees

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There are various ways to engage your employees to generate and submit great ideas.

Employees can help find solutions

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There are various ways to engage your employees to generate and submit great ideas.

Brainstorms

Schedule team brainstorming sessions.

Employees can help find solutions

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There are various ways to engage your employees to generate and submit great ideas.

Brainstorms

Staff Meetings

Generate ideas about solutions to priority impacts during your weekly staff meetings.

Schedule team brainstorming sessions.

Employees can help find solutions

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There are various ways to engage your employees to generate and submit great ideas.

Brainstorms

Incentives

Incentivize your employees to submit at least one idea for a monthly lunch/breakfast treat.

Staff Meetings

Generate ideas about solutions to priority impacts during your weekly staff meetings.

Schedule team brainstorming sessions.

Employees can help find solutions

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There are various ways to engage your employees to generate and submit great ideas.

Brainstorms

Online Hub

Create an online “hub” for sustainability and provide chances to win prizes if employees submit their ideas.

Incentives

Incentivize your employees to submit at least one idea for a monthly lunch/breakfast treat.

Staff Meetings

Generate ideas about solutions to priority impacts during your weekly staff meetings.

Schedule team brainstorming sessions.

Additional Thought

Other stakeholders of the company might also have ideas, and it could be interesting to include them in some of the brainstorming!

Employees can help find solutions

Other stakeholders of the company might also have ideas, and it could be interesting to include them in some of the brainstorming!

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In 2008, Artopex, a UK office furniture company, decided to make sustainability a priority, beginning with a plan to reduce its carbon footprint.

Case Example

THE SITUATION

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“So far, we have integrated sustainability into our sales presentations and training materials, as education is an important part of our strategy. We have opened discussions with all of our stakeholders including the dealers that are our customers and also our suppliers, with which we can act as a partner in testing new materials or new ways to transport goods. For instance, we met with transport companies and said that we wanted improvements on emissions, and they showed us their ideas. Those discussions, and the sharing of information, are big changes.”

Case Example

-Jean Barbeau, Artopex head of sustainability initatives

THE ACTION

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After seeking for great ideas with stakeholders, Artopex changed product design, material choices, and transport & logistics practices that resulted in both improved efficiency and reduced emissions!

Case Example

THE RESULTS

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To come up with solutions, you’ll have to go back to the work that the IWG did on priority impacts and SDGs.

Proposing Possible Solutions

Remember that we are focusing on the priority impacts, so the solutions that you choose should be tackling these 3-5 main issues.

Whoever is involved in coming up with solutions should be aware of these as well. For example, the stakeholders outside of the Internal Working Group should be up to speed on the priority impacts and associated SDGs.

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To give you a better idea, let’s take a look at the three examples we had earlier.

Proposing Possible Solutions

Tourism Agency

Local Restaurant Chain

Fabric Printer

Priority Impact

SDG(s)

The negative economic effect large tourism companies have on the local people.

The large amounts of food waste.

The chemicals used to dye the fabrics are unsafe for workers and consumers.

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2 & 12

3 & 6

What might be some possible solutions for each of these that decrease negative externalities and increase positive externalities?

EXTERNALITIES

Remember that externalities and impacts are interchangeable in the context of this course. A sustainable company increases positive externalities and decreases negative externalities over the course of time and as it grows.

Remember that externalities and impacts are interchangeable in the context of this course. A sustainable company increases positive externalities and decreases negative externalities over the course of time and as it grows.

Remember that externalities and impacts are interchangeable in the context of this course. A sustainable company increases positive externalities and decreases negative externalities over the course of time and as it grows.


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To give you a better idea, let’s take a look at the three examples we had earlier.

Proposing Possible Solutions

Tourism Agency

Local Restaurant Chain

Fabric Printer

Priority Impact

SDG(s)

The negative economic effect large tourism companies have on the local people.

The large amounts of food waste.

The chemicals used to dye the fabrics are unsafe for workers and consumers.

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2 & 12

3 & 6

Brainstorm your ideas on the next page and see what other learners have come with as well!

Solution(s)

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Click on the "+" under each column to add your brainstorm ideas for solutions to the priority impacts that were shown on the previous page.

Proposing Possible Solutions

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Based on the proposed solutions to your priority impacts, you will produce an implementation roadmap that includes:

The Implementation Roadmap

A chosen person in charge of monitoring the process

A schedule over 2 to 3 years

The necessary resources

A commitment to follow up through regular updates, shared within the IWG and with other employees

An indication of the objective of return on investment sought and the investment capacities that can be released for the proposed solutions

As with any company project, best practices include garnering the appropriate commitment from stakeholders and defining the best ways to measure the progress.

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But wait: The implementation roadmap is not the last step!

The Implementation Roadmap

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Methodology

Part 3

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Committing & Monitoring

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To set the roadmap in stone and ensure that action is taken, SME managers can sign a “sustainable process agreement with their employees.

Committing to implement and monitor

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The agreement commits all the actors to the two/three-year progress trajectory and organizes the actions and the steps needed to implement a series of measurements to evaluate progress toward goals.

Committing to implement and monitor

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KPI

The sustainability process agreement should include defined indicators to ensure follow up on specific items.


These indicators or KPIs could be established with a company accountant or the finance department to link them with financial measures.

Measuring your progress

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KPI

The KPIs that are chosen should be framed around limited but precise objectives concerning the priority impacts and solutions.

Measuring your progress

For example, metrics can be energy consumption, transport safety, waste and pollution reduction, social improvements, local partnerships, and more.


You can check out more examples of KPIs for sustainability here!

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And off you go! You’re ready to take action on a sustainability roadmap.


In the next module, we will take a look at how to communicate all of this great work with external audiences and get rewarded for your efforts.

Measuring your progress

Summary of today's module:

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01

There are 5 steps to the sustainability roadmap

To organize your efforts toward sustainability, you can follow the SME Sustainability Roadmap: 1. Understand the global issues 2. Choose priority impacts 3. Develop solutions 4. Commit and Monitor 5. Communicate

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impacts align with sdgs & solutions

It is best to choose 3-5 priority impacts to focus on when deciding how to tackle sustainability through your company's strategies and processes. These impacts help you align with the most appropriate SDGs and solution initiatives.

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make a plan and take action

Sustainability isn't just a solution written on paper. You have to commit to action with your employees through an agreement and monitor your progress.

Next:
Communication for a Competitive Advantage

Congratulations, you finished this module!

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