Responsibility for measuring sustainability results is too often relegated to junior staff, temporaryemployees or interns who may not have the necessary knowledge of the business to fully analyzeinformation.
Green Marketing and Sustainability
What does this have to do with green washing? Everything. Because companies that would never considerhaving newer, temporary or inexperienced people produce their quarterly financial reports are completelycomfortable with having them produce sustainability reports (sustainability performance measures). Whenthese numbers fall short of standing up to scrutiny or are used to solely generating marketing or publicrelations materials, organizational reputation is at risk. Failing to recognize the potential dangers of thistrend in organizations not only places reputation at risk but also places a chain of other dependent factors
employees, community, shareholders, partnering organizations
at risk as well! Go down the
but don’t take the rest with you!
If embedded effectively by qualified
in collaboration with key decision
makers,sustainability offers solutions to facilitate greater trust in business by applying fundamental principles tocore business values and operations that will generate clear indications of how credible these claims are. Asa result there is greater transparency between facts and claims, thus enabling consumers to see analignment between the brand ident
ity, product characteristics, and acclaimed ‘responsible’/ ‘good’
corporate citizenship initiatives.
Research showing the extent and power of Sustainability Reporting
New research conducted at the Centre for Sustainability and Excellence (CSE) confirms the hopes of manyover the last 15 years, that issues of sustainability will become a normal consideration when doing business.With much hard work by non-governmental organizations, business and government, the global businesscommunity is starting to understand the urgency for including sustainability into their long term strategies,as well as report these strategies to their outside stakeholders. The following represents some of thefindings of CSE:Sustainability reporting is now the norm with global companies reporting to stakeholders in variousregions of the world, even though reporting in this fashion is still overwhelmingly voluntaryGovernment regulation of sustainability issues is set to become the norm within the next five to tenyears.Regulation of sustainability and corporate responsibility (CSR) in various regions of the world will nowneed to come together for the creation of more uniform frameworks
Sustainability reporting frameworks, such as the GRI’s G3, will continue to add value to investors’
analysis as they highlight corporate sustainability strategy and vision, brand management, andenvironmental and social risk reduction.It is becoming more accepted that conventional financial reporting represents a less complete picture of
a company’s performance
Research showing the extent and power of the 'Green' Market
Additionally, CSE research has shown that despite the economic crisis, consumers are still purchasingproducts and services from organizations that make green claims; however, there still a majority of consumers that believe businesses commit to environmental policies particularly for market gains, with alarge percentage of consumers showing skepticism over claims (
Green Marketing and Corporate Social Responsibility
, Centre for Sustainability and Excellence; A.L.A.R.M, 2009).