Strategy, you say? No thanks, my company already has one.

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– Why do you need an ESG strategy?
– How is it different from your company strategy, and how do you integrate it into your company strategy?

Here’s a write-up from our advisory board member, Ginny Fogg: Your ESG program needs a strategy, and it needs to be front and center in your sustainability report.  The strategy should be aligned with your corporate strategy.  It should connect the value of your sustainability program to the bottom line.  And it should share a vision of how your program is creating shareholder value.  It should be short, succinct and clearly convey your sustainability advantage.

But at the same time, it’s kind of the reverse of your corporate strategy.  Your corporate strategy lays out a clear vision for the company’s strengths and competitive advantages.  And your sustainability strategy lays out your sustainability risks and how you are addressing them in a value-creating way.  Think of your weaknesses and then hit them straight on.  Does your company rely heavily on water usage?  Or is your company a heavy carbon emitter?  Explain how you address that risk, and how you are creating a competitive advantage over others in your industry.  That’s a strategy.

Check out Intel’s RISE strategy.  I’m loving this one!  It’s visual, it’s simple and it’s downright inspirational.