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The Takeaway: A Discussion Guide on Incorporating ESG Goals

A light bulb with green sprouts coming out of it.

If you were asked to lead a conversation about navigating the challenges of incorporating ESG priorities into your organization, what would be the most impactful themes to explore to generate actionable insights? Here are the critical questions that are at the core of key articles in this issue:

Pursuing PurposeScreen Shot 2023-01-03 at 104336 AM.png
by Alan Murray, CEO of Fortune Media and author of Tomorrow's Capitalist

1. How do your leaders and your organization balance the competing demands of various stakeholders?

2. Which of those balancing acts are most difficult and why? How can you bring those challenges into a broader company- or team-wide discussion to address them head on?

3. Are there ways to reframe those tensions and balancing acts as "and" propositions rather than "or" propositions?

4. By taking the long-term view around the best path to building a long-term sustainable organization, how can ESG be built into foundational conversations around strategy?

5. What is the framework within your organization for deciding whether and how to engage on the social issues of the day?

Screen Shot 2023-01-03 at 104336 AM.pngHow to Hybrid: A Case Study in Hybrid Planning

by Carina Cortese, partner at SYPartners

1. How can you make discussions around return-to-office less about policy and more about making it foundational to the culture of your organization?

2. Do you have clarity on what employees want, and why, so that discussions are focused more on a "pull" rather than a "push"?

3. How can your organization strike a balance by providing guidance on policies and avoiding both overly rigid rules and letting people simply decide for themselves?

4. What is your organization's communication strategy, to not only make people feel part of the process but also to ensure they understand the decision-making parameters?

Framing the ESG Conversation

Screen Shot 2023-01-03 at 104336 AM.png
by Gabrielle Thompson, former SVP, acquisitions and total rewards, Cisco

1. Are your organization's commitments to ESG reflected in the way senior executives are compensated? If not, should they be?

2. How does the executive compensation plan balance a focus on core financial performance while also rewarding performance against ESG targets?

3. What is your company's response if it ever faces criticism and pressure from external groups who believe that organizations should be focused solely on rewarding shareholders?

4. What are the views and values of your organization's board of directors and largest shareholders on ESG commitments? What about employees?

5. How do you identify the clearest and most actionable metrics for measuring progress against ESG goals?


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