Practicing “pragmatic purposefulness” in your ESG career

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Here’s a note from Nawar Alsaadi:

I have written a lot about purpose, and why its essential to be passionate when pursuing an ESG/sustainability career. However, I would also add that it is important to remain respectful in the pursuit of ones’ goals, and by this I don’t mean compromise your values, but rather practice what I would call “pragmatic purposefulness.”

The ESG field tends to cut across disciplines, its a field where science, math, finance and the humanities intersect. This uneasy marriage between disciplines forces finance practitioners to confront value driven issues, and when values enter the picture, certain personal sensibilities can be triggered.

In this context, its important to broach ESG issues with a degree of care, and an understanding that others may not share our passion or accept the premise of our pursuit. The issues that ESG professionals may perceive to be self-evident may not appear so to those unfamiliar with the vast array of issues underpinning the ESG field. This doesn’t necessarily makes them bad people. The key is to get others to appreciate the moral and practical character of what we are trying to achieve. This takes patience, humility, and the willingness to maintain an open and respectful dialogue with those that disagree with us.