Fully integrating sustainability into a company's strategy is fast becoming the new norm for business. However, engineering a credible and effective sustainability strategy can be a daunting and time-consuming task. Organisations need to fully understand and prioritise both the strategic and reputational risks that arise as a consequence of their business practices and operations.
The sustainability-related issues which may impact on core business strategy include:
Natural resource scarcity
Energy security and climate change
Increasing taxation and regulation around waste, carbon emissions and water consumption
Population growth and demographic change
Competitor actions on sustainability
Changes in supplier/value chain relationships
Poverty and human health
The impact that these issues may have on business strategy will be a function of the company's business sector and core business activities, the regions where they operate and the extent to which customers, investors, suppliers, employees and regulators and competitors, as well as wider stakeholders and pressure groups, are putting pressure on the company to respond.