We also have Sustainable Agriculture Guidelines that set out the standards we expect in our agricultural supply chains and are applied in conjunction with our supplier code , Partnering with Suppliers . These also provide guidelines to help our suppliers work continuously towards more sustainable agricultural practices by treating farmers and workers fairly , improving environmental impacts , protecting natural capital and supporting wider economic benefits for farming communities .
The company ’ s sustainability goals , like the diversity ones , form part of senior management KPIs . How has this framework helped to deliver results compared to the more HQ-led approach often seen in other sectors ?
Diageo was one of only eight beverage companies globally and 65 companies overall ( out of 9,600 ) to achieve A for both Water Security and Climate Change . On the Dow Jones Sustainability Index , we ’ re ranked as one of the top four beverage companies worldwide .
At Diageo , reporting is not just about meeting regulatory requirements and stakeholder expectations , it ’ s also fundamental to attracting and retaining the best talent , building deep consumer loyalty , creating new partnerships , and increasing innovation , efficiency and resilience across our operations .
Reporting transparently on our ESG progress and holding our senior management accountable play a vital role in delivering our 2030 goals . It sets the standard for the entire organisation , ensuring collective and individual responsibility to reach the targets . For example , Society 2030 and ESG reporting are now embedded as part of how we define our business success and performance . We have developed an integrated , quarterly reporting system that consolidates cross-functional non-financial performance data at market and regional levels , which gives senior internal stakeholders a clear view of our performance .
This has helped our progress in reaching our sustainability goals and it ’ s really encouraging that Diageo ’ s commitment and approach continues to be recognised externally .
ABOUT THE COMPANY
Diageo is the world ' s leading premium drinks business with an outstanding collection of beverage alcohol brands . Their portfolio stretches across spirits , wine and beer categories including international number one brands such as Smirnoff , Johnnie Walker , Guinness and Baileys as well as leading local brands such as Windsor and Shui Jing Fang . Diageo is a global company , trading in around 180 markets around the world . Find out more at www . diageo . com .
SPECIAL FEATURE: SUSTAINABILITY - COMMITTEE CONTENT
THE BUSINESS CASE FOR SUSTAINABILITY IS EASY TO MAKE
Indeed, Sunny Verghese, co-founder
of Singapore’s Olam International says
“the real ah-ha moment for securing
buy-in for sustainability is when you
demonstrate the real financial value of
initiatives either through added reve-
nues or savings”. The encouragement
towards sustainability from a business’
immediate stakeholders is a good place
to begin thinking around the business
case. actions can have a rapid and acute com-
mercial impact on a business, positive
or adverse. According to McKinsey
47% of consumers disappointed with
a brand’s stance on a social issue stop
buying its products, and 17% will never
return. While the appearance of ‘green-
washing’ is a real danger to a business,
authentic efforts to be sustainable
present benefits for brand reputation
and commercial opportunities.
Employees are now considered to be a
company’s most important stakehold-
er (Edelman, 2021). The evidence is
overwhelming that an engaged work-
force drives better returns, and engage-
ment comes from feeling that there is
a match of values between employee
and company. Companies that adopt
sustainable practices find it easier to
attract and retain talent. This under-
pins competitive advantage, through
productive high-performing people and
reputation, and reduces the replace-
ment and training costs associated with
higher rates of attrition. Globally 34% of
survey respondents said they have left
an organization solely because of the
silence on a societal issue, while 62%
of job seekers say that a responsible ap-
proach to sustainability is a compelling
factor to take a job. Suppliers are critical stakeholders in
both business success and sustain-
ability. The disruption of the pandemic
highlighted the need for resilient supply
chains and threw into relief the differ-
ence between transactional supplier
relationships and partnerships. The
opportunity is to improve the sustain-
ability of supply chains, to go beyond
compliance. Addressing the supply
chain to be sustainable will future-proof
the business by securing improved pric-
ing, better availability and a relationship
that will facilitate an agile response to
the next great business challenge.
Consumers are increasingly aware of
their ‘voting power’ as stakeholders
to encourage organisations towards
sustainable practices. The rise of ‘con-
scious consumerism’ means the social
or environmental impact of business
The notion that sustainability can un-
derpin growth is reinforced by the data.
While sustainability transformation may
constitute a step-change, the commer-
cial argument is compelling: over 2,000
studies have examined the impact of
ESG propositions on equity returns: 63%
found positive results and only 8% were
negative (McKinsey). When sustainabil-
ity is embraced as a responsible and
authentic response, it complements a
business’ value proposition, enhancing
Reflections on the Year
their ability to build trust, to adapt, and
to deliver results. Indeed, companies
driven by purpose achieve compound
annual growth rates of 9.9% outper-
forming the S&P 500 average of 2.4%
(Korn Ferry, 2021).
In this feature members of the BritCham Leadership,
Talent and Professional Development Committee look
back at 2021 for our last edition of the year.
Embracing sustainability involves a
mental shift, to question established
norms. Circular economic models
replace linear value chains. Designs
and materials consider restoration and
recycling. Financing considers longer
term returns. Smart buildings, energy
usage, renewables are all increasingly
important. Zero waste should now be a
standard aim everywhere. As is often
the case, business will innovate, mod-
ernise and drive a changing world.
In leading the charge into sustainability,
a business stands to unlock lower capi-
tal costs, more secure supply, improved
supplier relationships, a more engaged
workforce, a greater reputation, lower
fixed expenses and more loyal custom-
ers. As well as all that, it might just be-
queath a more habitable world to future
Whether new to embracing sustainabil-
ity, or farther down the road, the advice
here is to transform your business into
one which embeds sustainability into
every practice and decision. That way
you will deliver on your Triple Bottom
Line. People. Planet. And lots of profit.
and Chair, BritCham
Leadership, Talent and
Co-Founder and Director,
Conversations and Co-Chair,
BritCham Leadership, Talent
2021 was certainly a challenging year for businesses and the pandemic continued longer than many expected. Instead of the
anticipated opening of travel and restrictions, much of the world had to cope with a continuation of the same policies we saw
in 2020 to keep people safe. This in turn however, created new opportunities for many of our members with organizations
pivoting to stay relevant in the areas of LTPD. This included the shift to online learning and leveraging on new technologies to
create greater collaboration and increase productivity.
We saw a more permanent move to hybrid working, with even many ‘work from office’ companies allowing staff to work from
home a few days week. However, this in turn has caused challenges with engagement and building a strong company culture.
We tackled this in our panel event ‘Back to the Future’ which is available of download. However, LTPD will be looking at the
future of hybrid work and what this means in the coming months to support members with the new world of work.
Hiring the right talent is also becoming increasingly difficult with global mobility reduced, but the need for skilled workers
increasing every year. We were pleased to round off our podcasts for the year with the new Chamber Gold Partner Globalization
Partners to discuss just this issue. This is a topic we will also be provided members more content and value on to support this
To find out more about the work of this committee,
catch up on earlier content and access upcoming
events, click here.
We are pleased with another strong year from the committee and want to thank our engaged members who share their exper-
tise and networks with the chamber to produce these great events and content. Some of our committee members have also
kindly shared their thoughts from the year.
REFLECTIONS ON THE YEAR