Leading the way - NZ business embedding Sustainable Development Goals

9 Jun 2017
Rob Perry, Sustainable Leadership Manager

Future Leaders Participants 01 

Day one of the Future Leaders' Programme is down, and the Sustainable Business Council has been blown away by the energy and enthusiasm of the course participants!

There are 26 people from 24 different member companies taking part – showing their commitment to helping NZ businesses mobilise action on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The group has chosen five (of 17) Global Goals to focus on:

#7 Affordable and clean energy
#9 Industry, innovation and infrastructure
#11 Sustainable cities and communities
#12 Responsible consumption and production
#13 Climate Action

Participants have started to explore the importance of different types of leadership - to build momentum to progress the SDGs across the wider business community.

The programme has been developed with the leadership training organisation Catapult. Its expertise and know-how is at the heart of this work. Catapult is starting to equip these future leaders with the tools and insights they need - to be strong leaders advocating for sustainable practices and outcomes.

One of the key learnings so far is that real leadership is a paradox of trust and vulnerability. To be a great leader, you must be willing to be vulnerable, to risk being wrong, and letting people in so that they can too. The result? Trust, and a better, stronger organisation.

The participants come from many large and influential NZ businesses: Christchurch Airport, NZ Post, Christchurch Airport, Sanford, New Zealand Steel, Fonterra, OCS, Opus International Consultants, Deloitte, Vodafone, KiwiRail, Auckland Council, Air New Zealand, Toyota, Ports of Auckland, Fonterra, Sanford, Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Kei Whai Rawa Limited, Energy & Technical Services, OfficeMax, Countdown, Contact Energy, Westpac, AECOM, EECA and NZ Post.

They all share a common goal – leading effective positive change. And they all shared a common understanding – that even as businesses operating in a competitive environment, we must all work in collaborative partnerships with stakeholders to effectively deliver the SDGs.

We are excited for the next workshop in August. Stay tuned for more updates on what's coming next.

Robert Perry, Sustainable Leadership Manager