Most helpful positive review
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on March 22, 2012
Embedded Sustainability is a must read for any business leader and actually anyone living on this planet. The authors provide a compelling case that it's not a choice whether business should embrace sustainability. If a business is to succeed, sustainability should be part of a company's DNA due to declining resources, increased (radical) transparency, and also increasing expectations from stakeholders. However, the question still remains as to how to embrace sustainability. Others have noted as well - such as studies by McKinsey as well as Boston Consulting Group and MIT - that sustainability is not a choice for companies anymore. However, what is missing is understanding the how of embedding sustainability into a company's strategy and daily operations. In that respect, the authors provide an excellent roadmap for organizations. Actually, I do not know of any other book at this time that does so. That is why I think it is a must read. If sustainability is no longer a choice and if there is no better current resource on how to implement it, Embedded Sustainability is a book any manager who wants to succeed needs to read.
Although the book is written in business venacular, implicit in the book is a positive message and hope for the future. If our planet is to become sustainable, not only must business be part of the solution; but also, business can also transform its own image. Currently, business leaders are among the least trusted and most looked "down upon" people in society (very close to politicians). Yet, it can be these same business leaders that can help us get out of this mess we created. Doing so not only has great consequences for the planet but also builds a favorable image of the business towards consumers, society, as well as motivating employees to actually feel good about coming to work. Having said that, other authors have argued how sustainability can also improve image. But what sets this book apart is that if sustainability is truly embedded, then it is not false marketing or greenwashing. Contrary to companies who might throw a few dollars here and there, have employee volunteer 10 hours a year, or have one-off sustainability projects, embedding sustainability is about completely changing the culture of an organization form one that is short-term exploitation oriented to one that cares about the well-being of all stakeholders - and thus good business.