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The Sustainable Leadership Census
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The Sustainable Leadership Census

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The Sustainable Leadership Census was conducted by telephone within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of the University of Wisconsin-Extension May 19 - 23, 2010 among 1,006 U.S. adults.

"It's becoming increasingly apparent that sustainable management is not confined to a limited segment of 'green jobs'. Every job confronts sustainability issues," said David Schejbal, dean of the University of Wisconsin-Extension Continuing Education, Outreach and E-Learning division. "Educating all business executives about protecting the environment--not just those in 'green jobs'-- is the key to our sustainable future."

The Sustainable Leadership Census shows the American public supports the need to retool and learn more about the environment:

- A vast majority (82 percent) of U.S. adults agree that company leaders need to learn more about the environment in order to make better decisions. 

- Nearly four out of five U.S. adults (78 percent) agree that it's time for Corporate America to go back to school and retrain in the basics of how to protect the environment. 

- About four out of five people (82 percent) agree that educating business executives about sustainable management will help America remain competitive with the rest of the world. 

- Only one third (32 percent) of the employed respondents reported that their managers have had some training on the subject of sustainable management business practices.

"To compete as this new economy surges forward, today's corporate leaders must be environmentally agile, eco-literate, and able to respond quickly," said Schejbal. "We must educate executives already on the job. Future success rises and falls on access to education. Our job as educators now is to focus on delivering environmental and sustainability education to leaders across a company -- not just to those in 'green jobs'."

Companies all over the world are increasingly interested in the concept of the triple bottom line (TBL). They understand that business success is no longer defined only by monetary gain, but also by the impact an organization's activities have on society as a whole.

Movement toward corporate concern for the "triple bottom line"—financial, social, and environmental performance—requires radical change throughout the corporation. It is not "either/or." The new paradigm is "and also." A sustainable business excels on the traditional scorecard of return on financial assets and shareholder and customer value creation. It also embraces community and stakeholder success. It holds its natural and cultural environments to be as precious as its technological portfolio and its employees' skills.

The concept of TBL demands that a company's responsibility be to stakeholders rather than shareholders. Stakeholders include anyone who might be affected by a company's or industry's practices, including its workers, surrounding communities, and beyond. Committing to sustainable environmental practices is good business. Corporations can save money and reduce their environmental footprints by reducing waste, conserving energy, and maintaining environmentally safe manufacturing processes.

About the University of Wisconsin Sustainable Management Program

The University of Wisconsin-Extension has brought together four University of Wisconsin campuses--UW-Parkside, UW-River Falls, UW-Stout and UW-Superior--to craft online sustainable management certificates and an online bachelor of science degree that equips workers with the management skills they will need to lead sustainable business strategy.

 











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