The Business License You Need: Engaging Stakeholders

We are reminded every day to listen deeply to the customers we serve and the communities where we work and live. The insights and deep understanding that come from interacting with stakeholders is invaluable. In today’s volatile business environment with geopolitical uncertainty, the wisdom to listen intently and carefully seems more urgent.

 

Recent analysis suggests that investors’ concerns about social issues are growing quickly as companies try to keep pace with regulations in the U.S. and elsewhere.*  

Facing complex issues in the political and broader social arenas, companies must reconcile their public statements to how stakeholders experience their actions. How well do you understand what customers and communities experience with your brand daily? 

 

How we listen and engage with stakeholders and communities is changing.  

The approach to stakeholder engagement must be constant and circular to truly understand their experience, instead of just pushing one-way messages. Continuous stakeholder engagement will improve a company’s S — the social aspects of being responsible — a key element to your ESG & CSR. We know this matters to consumers and the newest members of the workforce. It also matters to governments, community-based organizations, and other critical endorsers of a company’s brand. So, what does continuous engagement look like? 

 

Our clients are bringing us in earlier to help them listen, equitably interpret, and engage with stakeholders. More than traditional market research, we are working with teams at the start of the ideation and design stages of developing new programs and initiatives. Our collaborative approach challenges assumptions to reveal inspiring and authentic ways to engage and learn from local communities. In one case, our engagement with stakeholders uncovered exactly how many and which localized dialect translations worked in which neighborhoods, and the language needed to build trust with residents. 

 

Continuous stakeholder engagement, deep listening, and building trusting two-way communication help you do business in ways that people will report and perceive as thoughtful, inclusive and fair.  

 

A proactive approach to engaging stakeholders will help you manage the complexity and ambiguity of corporate social responsibility. Clients working with Vega on stakeholder engagement receive the double benefit of advancing sustainability goals, and creating more inclusive cultures, and you can receive the same.

 

Contact us to discover how we can generate a dual benefit for your initiatives.

 

References: * M&A Disputes Expected to Increase Globally in a Challenging Deal Market