I led Jones Lang LaSalle’s energy services businesses in the Americas long before we expanded our menu to include a broad scope of sustainability services. So, like many in our business, I used to think of energy efficiency as the best way to add value to the corporate bottom line.
Reducing energy use and the associated carbon emissions is still a key part of any corporate sustainability program, but I now see even greater potential value in areas that touch employees more directly, such as health, well-being and job satisfaction, all of which affect productivity. It may be hard to measure the effect on an individual or company, but the correlation between sustainable companies and successful companies is too strong to ignore.
Becoming a sustainable company is more than just recycling and reducing energy, though. To achieve breakthrough performance, companies must create a collaborative process that involves key internal stakeholders from HR and IT to business units, as well as suppliers and customers.
How to create and implement such a process is a subject big enough to fill a book. That’s why my colleagues Tom McCarty, Michael Jordan and I co-authored Six Sigma for Sustainability, published this year by McGraw-Hill. Tom is one of the world’s leading authorities on Six Sigma, having published several books on the subject previously. I offer the sustainability viewpoint, and Michael—both a Six Sigma Black Belt and a LEED AP as well as one of our top consultants on CRE strategy—provides a unique dual perspective.
I’m obviously biased, but I believe there is no greater way for CRE directors to contribute to positive corporate transformation today that through an integrated energy and sustainability program such as we outline in Six Sigma for Sustainability.