Wong, L. & Avery, G.C. 2009.

Transforming organisations towards sustainable practices.

International Journal of the Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, 4(1), 397-408.

This paper focuses on the change process involved in adopting more sustainable practices within business organisations, adapting John Kotter’s (1995) eight steps in transforming organisations. The process begins with sharing the crisis of urgency regarding damage to the environment, ecology, ethics, and society. The politics involved in change are addressed using top management and powerful support groups, including representatives from diverse stakeholder groups. A clear vision of the future pointing to a sustainable enterprise needs to be created, communicated and shared, and tangible and intangible obstacles that may hinder achieving the vision modified or removed.

By identifying and celebrating short-term visible wins as sustainable practices are gradually introduced, people are encouraged to continue the change process to achieve longer-term embedding of sustainable practices into the firm’s systems. At this stage, changes that are more extensive can be introduced, until the final stage is reached where people accept that sustainable practices are a fundamental part of the organisational culture.

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