Emerger Strategies: Why are We in Business?
After doing some research on the fly-fishing industry I observed a trend that many of the more well-known brands donate money and time to conservation groups, but aren’t necessarily doing anything to alter their own behavior to minimize risks associated with climate change and population increase. How could an industry that is so dependent on a healthy environment not understand that its own operation is contributing to climate change? To quote David Brower, “there is no business to be done on a dead planet.”
However, the need to do more than support non-profits is not unique to the fly fishing industry. I have worked for several organizations, even one’s that sold “green” products and services, which subscribed to the same practice of being willing to stroke a check, but unwilling to change the way they do business. Maybe ‘change’ is a bad word? I should say ‘improve’ the way they do business, and businesses should continue to support non-profits that align with their own values. Imagine if every business or brand was donating to non-profits working to make the world a better place? Businesses would have a tremendous impact on improving lives all over the world, and helping to conserve and protect our natural resources. Anyways, I am not saying that donating money to non-profits is a bad thing whatsoever.
What I am saying is that this strategy is flawed. It is flawed because it is incomplete. It makes the brand seem unauthentic. It’s like the person who donates large sums of money to their church, but never attends. Nobody likes people, or brands, that are fake. People want to surround themselves with friends that are genuine, and brands that align with their own values. I believe that marrying philanthropy with environmental responsibility is a winning strategy for any business that wants to reduce risks associated with climate change, enhance their brand value and increase their growth.
So, why are we in business? Emerger Strategies is in business because we see climate change as the greatest threat facing our generation, and the generations to follow. We also believe that businesses can lead the charge in not only mitigating these risks, but reversing some of the threats associated with climate change. We want to help transform industries so that they do more good than harm. Our mission is to build purpose-driven brands that inspire solutions to social and environmental problems. We help brands minimize their environmental impact and turn their sustainability achievements into powerful marketing stories resulting in: mitigated risks, enhanced brand value and increased growth.
Emerger Strategies wants to assist the fly fishing industry so that it can continue to sustain itself by protecting and conserving natural resources that it depends on. In the words of Patagonia founder, Yvon Chouinard:
“Who are businesses really responsible to? Their customers? Shareholders? Employees? We would argue that it’s none of the above. Fundamentally, businesses are responsible to their resource base. Without a healthy environment there are no shareholders, no employees, no customers and no business.”
We are humbled and grateful to have the opportunity to work with the greatest companies in the fly-fishing industry, cannot wait to help your business minimize its environmental impact and turn your sustainability achievements into powerful marketing stories!