Sustainability & ESG – The Big Topic

Businesses of all sizes are increasingly focused on sustainability and environmental responsibility. This is evident in the rise of searches for terms such as “net zero emissions,” “ESG investing,” and “sustainable supply chain management.” However, there are still a number of difficulties that businesses and leaders face in achieving their sustainability goals.

Some people argue that the focus on sustainability and environmental responsibility is a distraction from businesses’ core mission of making money. However, businesses that are sustainable and environmentally responsible are more likely to attract and retain customers, employees, and investors*. They are also more likely to be resilient to changes in the market and regulatory environment.


  • One difficulty is that sustainability can be complex and expensive. It can be difficult to know where to start, and it can take time and resources to implement sustainable practices.
  • Another difficulty is that there is a lack of awareness and understanding of sustainability among some businesses and leaders. Many businesses are not sure what sustainability actually means.
  • Finally, there is a lack of regulation and enforcement in the area of sustainability. This means that businesses are not always required to adopt sustainable practices, and it can be difficult to hold businesses accountable for their environmental impact.

Another challenge is the complexity of global supply chains. It can be difficult to track and manage the environmental impact of suppliers, especially those located in developing countries. Additionally, there is often a lack of transparency and accountability throughout the supply chain.

Finally, there is the challenge of getting buy-in from all stakeholders. Employees, customers, and investors may all have different priorities, and not everyone may be convinced that sustainability is worth the investment.

COGENT Approach

How has COGENT Executive helped to deliver strategic and outcome focused enhancements and what have we learned?

  • Define clear benefits for the company AND its customers.
  • Focus on how delivering an ESG strategy can lower costs and improve ROI.
  • Develop and implement new sustainability technologies, processes, and practices.
  • Improve energy efficiency and reduce their waste (particularly within the Supply Chain).
  • Track and measure progress towards sustainability goals.
  • Communicate sustainability efforts clearly and concisely to stakeholders.

At COGENT we help businesses to develop and implement sustainability strategies that are aligned with their overall business goals, helping to ensure that sustainability is not seen as a separate initiative, but rather as an integral part of the business.

If this has raised interest and you would like to learn more about our approach, drop me an email at 


* Sources: 
  • A 2022 Nielsen study found that 66% of global consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable products and services.
  • A 2021 study by Cone Communications found that 70% of millennials would be more likely to purchase from a company that is committed to social responsibility.
  • A 2022 Deloitte study found that 83% of millennials say that having a positive impact on society is more important to them than salary when choosing a job.
  • A 2021 study by Glassdoor found that companies with strong sustainability ratings are more likely to be seen as attractive employers by job seekers.
  • A 2022 study by Harvard Business Review found that companies with strong ESG (environmental, social, and governance) performance have outperformed the market over the past decade.
  • A 2021 study by BlackRock found that ESG investing is now mainstream, with global ESG assets under management expected to reach $50 trillion by 2025.