Within an organization, the CEO is by far the leading champion of green ventures, according to Frost & Sullivan’s inaugural Going Green survey, an evaluation of senior managers’ perceptions of and current/future initiatives toward environmental/sustainable issues within the organization. However, the motivations behind this differ, as organizational leaders are polarized in their perception of going green: it is viewed as either a moral/ethical obligation, or an advantage for growth.
Significantly more organizational leaders below the CEO level, such as vice presidents or directors, actually perceive going green as more of a growth opportunity than CEOs do (34% vs. 23%).
The survey also measures both current and future green initiatives underway within organizations. Not surprisingly, the most popular proposal seems to be the incorporation of green concepts into product design (41% for current, 60% for future), followed by the creation of green-branded products or services.
The majority of respondents also indicated that their companies’ rates of investment in green initiatives are expected to increase. Additionally, according to the survey, the primary compelling drivers for going green are a potential competitive advantage (69%), a growth opportunity for the company (67%), or general corporate social responsibility (62%).
However, as might be expected, the biggest challenge to going green is cost, as roughly half of the respondents recognize the investment challenge that incorporating environmental/green strategies can bring.