How to create a sustainability policy and action plan with your clients
Perhaps they say they want to ‘go green’ and you want a framework and structure to follow.
So where should you begin on your sustainability planning
There is a general perception that sustainability will cost more and whilst certain ‘green’ materials do- switching materials is not what sustainability is about. And efficiency savings, in one area, can pay for more expensive options. Plus the value-add for marketing, PR and customer satisfaction is priceless.
How to co-create a policy with a client
This will make the policy meaningful and hold people accountable. It will also avoid those frustrating conversations when a director asks, ‘why isn’t it a paper-free event’?
I have conducted many of these discussions with corporate festival agencies to nightclub teams. I start off by asking questions around what matters to people in relation to the 3 pillars of sustainability – people, planet and profit:
- What do they identify as the big issues in the world – what do they care about?
- What are the big issues in the events industry or their event in particular?
- What is their vision of the ideal world that addresses all of these?
- Then using a prioritisation exercise, I go back over those issues and relate it to their event by asking:
- How important is the issue (1-5)
- How much control do we have over the issue (1-5)
Using this information I would then create a policy that includes:
Issue statement – what are the core issues you identify
Vision – what is your vision of a better/ ideal future (the dream)
Scope of policy – what are the priorities (the highest-scoring areas)
Commitments – what will you do
How to create an action plan
Going plastic-free is not specific, measurable, achievable, realistic or timely, when you consider that most graphics materials are made from plastic.
A SMART target looks like:
- 100% plastic bottle free by 2021
- 75% single-use plastic-free by 2023
An action plan should include:
- The actions required to achieve your targets
- When they need to be completed
- Who needs to know – so many sustainability initiatives fall down because they are not communicated to key stakeholders
- How you will be measuring and monitoring your achievements – accountability is essential especially if you want to tell your clients and audience about your efforts.
Need some step-by-step instructions?
Not sure where to begin?
Our on demand content takes you through a step-by-step process with all the documents and templates to create a policy and an action plan that inspires and engages.
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