It is interesting to see how different people/organizations choose their objectives and design their pursuit of excellence. Excellence itself means different things to different people/organizations. For some it means increasing Net Revenue, for some it means increasing IRR and for others excellence can be achieved by controlling expenses.

More so today than in the past, excellence includes embracing a greater focus on ESG. As those in our industry continue on our ESG journey, or perhaps prepare to take our first steps in ESG, we look to the leaders and pioneers in the space — long before ESG even had a name, long before ESG was considered important.

Patagonia is one such pioneer. If you are embarking on any Sustainability or ESG path, Patagonia is a Case Study that everyone knows. They were doing sustainability before it was Sustainability. Patagonia was doing the things that are now considered to be ESG practices when these practices were considered revolutionary or maybe even a bit fringe.

Today, Patagonia not only donates its profits to environmental causes but offers its customers merchandise credits for the return of gently worn clothing, which it then offers in its used clothing sections. Patagonia looks at where their materials are coming from and how they are sourced. Patagonia even cares about their products’ life cycle AFTER products have left their shelves, AFTER products have been on journeys of their own!

They are not perfect, but they are transparent, focused on their mission and actively pursuing their objectives. They may not operate in the same space as any of us, but in their Spirit of Adventure, Patagonia’s journey can serve as a roadmap of suggestions for our own ESG adventures. Our journeys will certainly not be easy or smooth, but each journey is unique to that company and is an inimitable product of our organizations’ own efforts and objectives within ESG. There are pioneers to follow, but everyone and every organization must eventually chart their own path towards excellence.

 

 

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