Engaging with your stakeholders

Sustainability report: Reporting is a must nowadays if you want to maintain good relationships with your stakeholders and protect your reputation. However, the layout and scope of corporate sustainability reports can vary quite significantly while still remaining relevant to stakeholders. Regardless of format, the most important goal is to ensure that your core messages reach your target audience.

Rankings and ratings: The facts and figures that you collect for your corporate sustainability report form a solid basis for inclusion in sustainability ranking and rating indexes. Leading performance on environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) issues, for example, can have a positive impact on your share price.

Non-listed companies can also benefit from voluntary participation in standardised sustainability questionnaires not only by enabling useful comparisons with competitors but also by helping to identify potential savings and develop strategies.

Media strategy: A media strategy is vital in helping you establish beyond doubt that your key sustainability messages are being heard by the specific audiences you most want to reach.

Tone from the top: Managers and leaders must show that they endorse a company’s sustainability strategy. Utilise your internal and external communication channels to strengthen your leadership endorsement.

Stakeholder dialogue: You know who your most important stakeholders are. So it makes sense to create opportunities and defined formats to effectively engage with them, and these should definitely include face-to-face meetings.

Employee communication: Every employee at every level of your organisation is an ambassador for your company. So don’t just tell your people what you’re doing – make sure they’re actively involved in the process. One way to do this is to include sustainability topics in your training and ongoing learning offerings.