Making the business case come alive

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Posted by:
Peter Belisle
Energy and Sustainability Services, President

In the wake of the economic downturn of the past few years, owners and occupants have been focused on strategies that produce a direct return on investment or reduce operating expenses. Discretionary dollars for sustainability strategies didn’t disappear altogether, but there hasn’t been much money for programs that don’t produce a direct financial return on investment.

The results of our most recent survey with CoreNet Global suggest that may be starting to change. One of the key takeaways from the survey: employee health and productivity is high on the list of sustainability priorities for corporate real estate executives.

That doesn’t mean companies are ready to move forward on strategies with no financial benefit. It may mean they’re ready to take on some initiatives where the benefit is hard to measure. But companies still have limited funds and many competing priorities.

Our job as sustainability consultants is to help CRE make the internal business case for investment in sustainability initiatives beyond energy and carbon measurement. The evidence that good environmental policy and practice breeds financial success is out there. How well can we connect the dots to turn that evidence into a solid business case?

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