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  • Nick Pye

Singular strategy – why it makes no sense to have separate sustainable and a growth strategies


We need a singular view of strategy...

In the last 12 months we have seen more and more requests from a range of clients for both growth and sustainability strategies.


At Mangrove, over the last few years, we have been trying to merge the two.

Our key learning has been that the reality of looking to massively grow a business or business unit whilst ALSO massively reducing its impact requires either hugely radical interventions at the core of the business (which will cost) and/or a BS check on one or both aspirations. This tension needs to be addressed by a long term, singular view, which requires working the two objectives together NOT in parallel.

If they are seen as separate and distinct, then they compete and force leaders to make unpleasant choices – either hit the ££ numbers or invest for sustainability. In the absence of a singular strategy, the urgent (bottom line/next quarter) overwhelms the important …and it is sustainability that loses out. We believe that this split has a key factor slowing progress towards the stretching corporate sustainability targets.

By starting with a long term and connected view of business and working back, it is possible to combine the financial and sustainable thinking “at source”…

This means working on projects to explore options and choices required to create "the right kind" growth and impact. This means commercial, supply, sustainability and innovation leaders working together to look at what it might take to create a low carbon/low impact & high-performance/margin businesses. This all has significant implications - what sort of business is being created (both it’s long term shape, success metrics/KPIs and it’s purpose).

If you have any thoughts, experiences or want to find out more about how this might work practically in your business then please do contact us.

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