Senior business executives in Singapore now have a safe space to discuss their ideas and challenges for implementing Sustainability within their organisations.
Since the release of the landmark IPCC report in August 2021, a number of highly prominent organisations have emerged to completely reverse their stance on zero carbon emissions (like NewsCorp), or are pulling their weight by divesting from their investments in mining fossil fuels (such as Harvard). A further sign of this kairotic moment is that the term ESG (Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance) has become important in business, signalling that dialogue within and among enterprises is changing to that of adopting a holistic approach towards achieving carbon neutrality. The conversation is evolving from sustaining the current resources, to how it can go further; to recycle, reuse, save, preserve, or regenerate the environment so that the needs of future generations can be met. The people at the forefront of doing that are establishing a new peer group at the executive networking group EGN Singapore, a place where they can openly discuss the challenges they face in sustainability and confidentially, moot approaches and solutions among peers.
“Sustainability is a global problem. The scope and scale of the challenge is such that single companies are unlikely to provide the whole solution. Given the scale of the problem, solutions will likely only come through collaboration and joint effort,” said Bill Bryant, a founding member of EGN’s sustainability peer group, and a senior executive of a company that is engaged in maritime logistics. “The peer group model provides a very important forum for open and unfettered exchange of ideas and options. It is also possible for companies in the same industry to discover common purpose, because we share our approach to the issues we all face.”
The Sustainability Group is a supportive forum for EGN members to uncover and discuss key issues around sustainability, path to net zero, risk management, or profit opportunities that confront business owners and SMEs. By delving into key issues, executives can attain the information they have been missing or find collaborators to develop shared solutions.
Chair of the Sustainability Group, Joanne Flinn, said: “I grew up with the Green Revolution around me as my father was a scientist in this field. I firmly believe that today, we in business can make profit, purpose, and planet work. And as an individual, I’ve burnt out more than once, so I see this peer group as a place where sustainability is as much about you as a leader as it is your business.”
Flinn thinks that sustainability is a strategic imperative for businesses today. Formerly country head of the Financial Services Consulting Practice for PwC and a member of the IT ExCo at DBS, she recently led a strategy project, the Alliance to End Plastic Waste, for a US$1.5bn fund. Flinn is also an advisor on international governance and ESG at CPA Australia.
EGN peer groups facilitate members to share their practical experience from an executive and ownership perspective. Anyone who is interested in participating in the group is encouraged to become an EGN member.