Business on a Mission – How to Build a Sustainable Brand
By Andy Last
This easy-to-read and engaging book is the perfect introduction to how to build a sustainable brand for your organization. Intended as a roadmap that can be readily applied by busy managers and practitioners, the book includes interviews with business leaders, including Paul Polman of Unilever, Adam Elman of Marks & Spencer, and Jonas Prising of ManpowerGroup to provide insight into best practice and clear guidance for implementation. Throughout, the book avoids jargon and theorizing to ensure readability. Business on a Mission is based on more than a decade working with some of the first businesses to develop social missions and shows the foundations behind their success. It looks at how businesses can profit from working hand in hand with society and identifies a model for success.
The book demonstrates how businesses can go from hiding behind “social shields” to picking up “social swords” and presents the six criteria to look for in assessing a social mission. It also focuses on how good communications can build trust and bring about positive change; and it provides clear ways to engage employees and improve productivity as well as “rules” for communicating social missions externally. This optimistic book explains the benefits of partnerships in the sustainable development agenda, particularly between businesses and NGOs.
Besides many great tips and interviews, you`ll also find out more about the story of the Lifebuoy soap brand, which has been described as ‘the best social responsibility program ever’. The Lifebuoy social mission combines the social impact of increasing handwashing with soap as a habit to save lives, with the business benefit of selling more soap – a really clear and simple example of purpose and profit going hand in hand (and one of the reasons for the image on the front cover). One of the things we did to get the message out there was encouraging the support of First Ladies at the Fashion 4 Development luncheon in New York in 2014. There are some fabulous photos of fashion celebrities and First Ladies supporting the initiative here.
The launch of “Business on a Mission: How to Build a Sustainable Brand” is happening this Wednesday at the GoodHotel. It’s sold out, but it’s a wonderful new venue that puts sustainability at its heart and shows that you don’t have to compromise between premium quality and sustainability.
You may order the book by clicking HERE . Also, we`d like to kindly thank Andy and his publishers for providing a 25% discount for our readers, which is the following coupon code: TrendPriveMag.
We had the great pleasure of interviewing Andy and we`re very happy to reveal this amazing conversation with you all.
Tell us a little bit about yourself. When did you start writing and how did you discover this passion?
I’ve enjoyed writing for as long as I can remember. Getting down to start is always a problem, but when I’m in the flow, everything else can disappear. I’ve been able to write as part of my job but it’s only in the last few years that I’ve started to blog, and this is my first book.
Tell us a little bit about the book “Business on a Mission: How to Build a Sustainable Brand”?
The book starts with the story of a life-changing visit I made to Kenya in 2006, where I realized that what I did for a living (helping businesses communicate better) could dovetail more closely with my personal values. I started working with businesses from that point onwards on how they could do well by doing good, with the belief that profit and purpose could go hand in hand. I suppose the thought of writing a book started to emerge around five years ago, and the pressure gradually built to get what we were seeing in our work down on paper.
It feels like now is a really important time for people to think about how business should be done. All over the world forces are at play driving business towards a more sustainable relationship with society, not least the transparency of the digital age and the demand from Millennials for purpose and meaningful work. The Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Climate Change Conference placed further pressure on businesses to step up to their social and environmental responsibilities. Business on a Mission has been written as a handbook for anyone wanting to know how businesses can link doing social good with driving profitable growth.
What attracted you to the sustainable lifestyle? When and how did that happen exactly?
I think most people would choose a sustainable lifestyle if they could. The trouble is that day to day life gets in the way. I’ve been very lucky in the sense that I’m able to promote sustainability through my work so that work and life can go hand in hand.
If you had three wishes regarding the world we live in today, what would they be?
That business leaders embrace the responsibility and opportunity they have to promote sustainability, even if politicians back away from it.
That we can create healthy, transparent, productive partnerships between governments, NGOs/charities and businesses to achieve a balance between economic growth, social justice and environmental sustainability.
And that we can start to see our common ground more easily than our differences.
If you could wake up tomorrow and have gained one ability, what would it be and why?
A sense of style.
Thank you Andy! We wish you much success in your future endeavors.