Graham Birkenhead, July 11 2023

E, S & G - Separate but Inseparable

But, how do I start to implement ESG and PPP in my company?

Environment / Planet, Social / People, and Governance / Prosperity can be, and often are, considered separately:

 Each of these is in itself a massive area; it's no wonder that we try to break it down into manageable chunks.

But these 3 elements are actually inseparable. They form 3 key components of an ecological 'complex system'; achieving and maintaining balance is the goal, and sustainability is the outcome. For example, profit can be (and has been) achieved by exploitation of environment and people.  Focusing on social (the me, me, me effect) can result in excessive resource consumption, and poor management practices.  A focus on the environment creates disengagement and ultimately pushback from people - often from increasingly draconian policies.

The interaction between Environment/Planet, Social/People, and Governance/Prosperity are interrelated and mutually reinforcing. Achieving sustainability requires an holistic approach that integrates all three elements.  So how can we do that?

The first thing is 'just start', but with the new lens of seeing how any activity or initiative can or will have a broader impact and may need a broader input to be effective. 

Here's an example of a small technology company that decided to implement some cultural changes based on a DEI framework:

ESG sounds a bit 'enterprise level' and daunting, but its principles can be applied anywhere.  And any company can take a first step - even a small one - and then build on that.  

What's your first / next step?


Written by

Graham Birkenhead


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