In order to build a good corporate sustainability report (CSR), it is important to have a solid team in place. The steps to recruit and motivate that team, however, are not unique to sustainability. Solid project management, expert networking and persuasive leadership are among the key business skills needed to guide your team in delivering a world-class report.
Once you have identified the key experts needed for your sustainability report team, you need to get them onboard, ensure that everyone is contributing what is needed, and keep them motivated. After all, a sustainability report requires help from people who probably see sustainability reporting as an add-on to their ‘real’ job. This makes putting together an enthusiastic team that works together cohesively more than a little bit challenging. There WILL be bumps along the way. Many of these will result from things outside of your control, such as company politics, personality conflicts or technical difficulties. So it is critically important to pay close attention to the details that are under your control in order to create a positive team environment that generates enthusiasm and encourages ongoing participation.
So, here are some basic, practical ways to get and keep people engaged:
Everybody hates a last minute request that requires a mad dash to meet a deadline. This is especially frustrating when the work could easily have been accomplished with advancednotice. Help your team by building a project plan with a realistic timeline. The plan should clearly assign deliverables, list key meeting dates, and establish deadlines so everyone knows what to expect and when. Share the project plan early and be sure to communicate changes in a timely manner. This will allow your team to build the reporting workload into their schedule for the year and prevent the frustrations of last minute requests.
Rebecca Treacy-Lenda, a Strategist at Emotive Brand, is an award winning communications professional with more than a decade of experience in corporate communications and public relations. Rebecca specializes in sustainability strategy and communications having managed the industry-leading UPS sustainability report for several years.
Rebecca is part of the team at Emotive Brand, an award-winning brand and design consultancy that transforms businesses by making brands matter more to people.
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