Build a sustainability plan 101: pitch and launch the plan

EDF Supply Chain Solutions Center

Know how to tell the story

At virtually every step of the process, you’ll be “selling” your sustainable plan to different audiences: stakeholders, collaborators, information sources, etc. But you will no doubt encounter specific moments that may require a more structured pitch or presentation, including:

  • Getting buy-in from your sustainability team.
  • Getting buy-in from your “decider” stakeholders (e.g., C-Suite, business divisions).
  • Announcing the plan internally (e.g., employees, shareholders).
  • Launching the plan externally (e.g., customers, suppliers, potential investors).

Your Marketing & Communications team will be invaluable allies now, and you’ll be glad you’ve been engaging them since the early stages of developing your plan. But one of our favorite quotes is that the real job of a Corporate Sustainability team member is actually to be the “Chief Translation Officer.” The story you’re telling — of your company doing business in a sustainable manner — will quite possibly be a strange, new, complex concept to many people.

Knowing how to communicate your plan — at any stage — is a skill that can pay dividends in several forms, including clarity of strategy, ease of implementation and enthusiastic acceptance by stakeholders.

Essentially, you’ll be telling your same sustainability “story” over and over again, tweaked slightly for each audience. To  that end, communicating your plan follows 3 key principles:

  • Identifying and understanding your audience(s).
  • The “why,” “what” and “how” of your mission.
  • A call to action (what you want them to do).

This brief overview isn’t intended to capture the breadth of communicating your plan to your various stakeholders. For a comprehensive, step-by-step guide on communicating your plan, go to:

Communicate and launch 101 (coming soon!)

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