Launched during the Covid-19 lockdowns, #SustyTalk is an ongoing series of video conversations that keeps edie’s audience connected to the inspirational business leaders who are continuing to drive sustainability and climate action.

Each SustyTalk Live video was recorded at the flagship edie 23 event in London on 1/2 March and the sessions that you’re watching are sponsored by Persefoni. An evolution of the multi-award-winning Sustainability Leaders Forum, edie 23 is the premier annual event dedicated to achieving environmental and social transformations through courageous business leadership.

This is the fourth in the SustyTalk Live series from edie 23.

Watch episode one here

Watch episode two here.

Watch episode three here.

For the fourth episode, edie is joined by Ben Kellard, director of business strategy Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) and Helle Bank Jorgensen, founder, Competent Boards to look at how sustainability leadership has changed over the years, and how it will continue to evolve to respond to a plethora of challenges.

Jorgensen outlined how her organisation was trying to instill a sense of purpose in corporate boards that prepare them for the challenges on the horizon.

“You need to have the purpose, and a solid one, but you also need to understand what the purpose of the board is. I believe that we as board directors have a role of stewards of the future,” Jorgensen said.

“An integrated mindset, understanding what the pressure points are, not just today but in three, five years, and who your customers will be is crucial. If you’re only looking at today, you’re not going to be ready for tomorrow.”

CISL’s Kellard used the discussion to outline what exactly corporate purpose should look like, referencing the two internal domains on internal realisation and external pressures.

“Purpose-led organisations are really combining two things,” Kellard says. “What’s the outside-in view on the business and how are big global trends impacting us and changing needs of society?

“The second piece is that outside-in view. What are our corporate capabilities? What are we good at? What’s our secret source and then bringing those two domains together to identify those purpose domains, where can we distinctly contribute to society? That’s the unlock.”

The discussion also covers what individual skills sustainability professionals will need to develop to steer businesses through a time of disruption.

Click here to see our catalogue of #SustyTalk interviews.

Want to be featured on a future episode of #SustyTalk? Email [email protected]. Please bear in mind that our interview calendar is typically booked several weeks in advance. We are now booked for the remainder of March.

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