We asked four experts: How does your organization go beyond charity/philanthropy/financial relationships to establish true partnerships? How can this lead to new business models and mindsets?
VP, Sustainability & Stakeholder Relations
Nutrien believes in working with others to create shared-value partnerships. We encourage ongoing collaboration, sharing of information and pooling of resources because it leads to more informed, effective and lasting outcomes for all. Many partnerships are long term and go far beyond providing one-off funding, instead spearheading opportunities that create world-changing impact. Consider Nutrien’s continuing partnership with the Saskatoon Tribal Council, which has been in place for seven years. An industry engagement agreement outlines a collaborative understanding regarding employment, training and procurement initiatives, and opportunities. It is a mutually beneficial journey. The commitment to industry-leading partnerships like these result in truly meaningful Aboriginal engagement and economic participation.
Senior VP, Corporate Affairs and Secretary
Export Development Canada
Export Development Canada is a for-profit Crown corporation that helps Canadian companies expand their businesses internationally. CARE Canada is a not-for-profit that fights global poverty. For 10 years, our organizations have partnered to generate economic opportunities around the world, contributing to programs supporting financial inclusion, small business development and women’s economic empowerment. EDC employees take on four-month assignments around the world, leveraging their business skills and expertise to strengthen CARE’s capacity as a leading humanitarian organization. In exchange, our employees return with new skills, fresh perspectives, a deeper understanding of cultures in developing countries and an expanded notion of what community means. EDC is proud to contribute to CARE’s important mission, in a way that also supports our mandate to leave a very Canadian – and responsible – footprint around the world.
VP of Communications, Public and Government Affairs
Bayer strongly believes in giving back to the communities where we work, and we strive to ingrain that philosophy within our corporate culture, something our more than 1,200 employees across Canada readily embrace. For years we supported community organizations through sustainability initiatives designed to give back, financially. While this has always been a critical component of our efforts, and something we have not lost sight of, we felt we could do if we better engaged our workforce. In 2017, our employees helped us to define the two organizations that they most wanted to support, and our new Corporate Social Engagement plan took flight. Since we redefined our approach, we have seen an increase in community participation focused on our new partners and a level of interest that offers a promising vision for the future.
Chief Sustainability Officer
True partnerships form when an organization creates an audacious goal for its business, because this requires the company to look outside its own capabilities. When we first began our sustainability journey, we knew we needed transformation within the supply chain to eliminate our environmental footprint. So we challenged our yarn suppliers to create a product with more recycled content. This led to a shift within our industry, because our competitors bought yarn from the same suppliers. Now we’re taking on an even bigger goal with our new mission, Climate Take Back. It calls on business to reverse global warming. We believe using carbon as a resource is the path to reversal, and we’re collaborating with like-minded companies to drive innovation.
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