ABSTRACT

This chapter draws on the examples to identify some of the common lessons learned by companies and stewardship organizations, and strategies that have proven to be effective. Successful companies listen to and respond to the expectations of important stakeholders, including customers, employees, regulators, shareholders and respected NGOs. Government regulators are an important stakeholder group for most organizations because of their ability to support or disrupt business activities. Life-cycle thinking opens up new possibilities to improve the sustainability of a product and its supply chain. Carpet manufacturer Interface has used lifecycle assessment research to identify opportunities for product improvement. Every product is associated with a wide variety of environmental and social issues over its total life-cycle. In the supply chain, these might include land degradation from mining, extraction of scarce or unsustainably harvested raw materials, pollution from manufacturing, child labour or human rights abuses. The D&D Technologies packaging example highlights the value of looking for multiple business benefits.