New Joiner Announcement

New Joiner Announcement

Our path to digital transformation and community engagement is strengthened further by the addition of Andrew Griffiths to our management structure. 

Following recent signification promotions internally for both our Certification and Sales teamsand by the addition of a brand new Head of Marketing, we are also embarking on a digital transformation project, which will further enhance the exceptional engagement element of the work we do in supporting our members of The Planet Mark community. 

We are delighted to announce we will be joined by Andrew Griffiths on 13th July as our new Director of Digital and Community. Andrew will lead the use of digital technologies and support community events to nuture new and exsisting networks, supporting increased engagment with existing The Planet Mark members and open up new markets in line with our digital vision, marketing and sales strategies. 

A wearer of many hats, Andrew is an astute problem solver for organisations working on a wide variety of projects including corporate reviews, L&D, business operations, communications and healthcare systems. He is exceptional at creating and celebrating community, having worked prolifically on a wide variety of community initiatives that bring people together. As Institute of Directors Ambassador for Young Directors, Andrew has organised huge range of professional events, including at the Houses of Parliament.  

Andrew said “Having been a huge fan of The Planet Mark for the past couple of years, I’m absolutely over the moon to be joining the team and can’t wait to hit the ground running with helping drive forward our mission of supporting organisations to reduce their carbon and increase social impact.”  

At The Planet Mark we recognise that we must bring together the best of people, technology and nature to tackle the climate crisis. We are embedding digital technology throughout our 3-step certification process to help better measure, engage and communicate every company’s contributions to society and the environment. 

2020-2030 remains the most important decade in human history, the #DecadeOfAction. We are aware of how crucial this time is and despite the exceptionally challenging economic circumstance we all find ourselves in, we have taken important steps to strengthen and deepen our commercial position as we continue to grow and support our community of The Planet Mark members.  

Steve Malkin, CEO, shares: “I vividly remember the moment Andrew accepted our offer to work with the team at The Planet Mark. In the moment it took for him to say ‘yes’ I was struck by the overwhelming feeling that we were going to go on and do something incredible.  He brings boundless energy, passion and knowledge to The Planet Mark that will help us grow and deliver even more positive impacts for society and the environment. We are overjoyed that he is joining.” 

Please join us in welcoming Andrew and celebrating our amazing digital journey together as a thriving community. Together, we will make a world of difference. 

Where is the Green in Boris’ New Deal?

Where is the Green in Boris’ New Deal?

Have we missed an opportunity to reset our economy and society on a sustainable pathway to combat the worst of climate change? Boris Johnsonbuild build build cry is to have little substance in meaningfully reducing carbon emissions.

As traumatic as this health crisis has been, it offered a rare window of introspectionWe were presented with an exciting list of opportunities to rebuild a Great Green Britain includingretrofitting, housing stock energy efficiencyfuel efficiency, eradication of fuel poverty, cutting carbon emissions, extensive EV infrastructure roll-out, diesel scrappage scheme, incentives for EV purchasing, and investment into renewablesWe hope these opportunities are not lost.   

At The Planet Mark we relentlessly champion direct action in tackling climate change and biodiversity loss and encourage every organisation to directly contribute to society. We do this predominantly with the business community because individuals in these organisations understand these are the most important issues of our time.   

In light of Boris Johnsons announcement today, we will be redoubling our efforts and calling on all organisations in the UK economy to build build build, but with the environment, society, and the economy in mind.  
 
We appeal to every developer, construction company and subcontractor to build back better. If we are to build new roads, let them be the pathways for zero carbon transport and actively reduce embodied carbon during their construction 

We may be proven wrong, but perhaps we were misguided in assuming this government would do the right thing. We have always placed our faith in businesses to lead the way and today that has been evidenced once more. We appeal directly to every business out there to drive the sustainability agenda. 

And let us repeat the business case for sustainability: Organisations with strong sustainability strategies outperform those that don’t. Those that cut carbon save money, that people want to support ethical brands with their spending, that companies that embrace sustainability attract talent and reduce employee turnover. The bottom-line proves that sustainability is good for business, and so business is good for society and the environment. 

A recent poll from YouGov found that only 6% of the population want to return to the pre-lockdown economy, an appetite for change mirrored across a string of policy briefings and open letters issued to the Prime Minister and his government, imploring decision makers to align the UK’s recovery package with net-zero targets.   

There was always a risk that, in their haste to kickstart economies post-Covid-19, governments might fall into a default of investing and providing stimulus to traditional sectors and companies, the usual suspects of big corporations and organisations with a history of polluting and of embedded fossil fuels.  Reviewing the policies that make up this ‘New Deal’, Johnson’s plan to ‘build, build, build’ includes allocating £100Mfor a road-building programme and a deregulation of the housing market. 

A myriad of  businesses, green groups and thought leadershave urged more targeted, specific and ambitious action on decarbonisation as part of the green recovery. The New Deal makes no reference of carbon pricing, the UN SDGs or a holistic approach to transport – all key demands in the build-up to the announcement.   

Although not enshrined in this New Deal, t
he climate crisis will remain at the forefront of political debate with leaders who can embrace and share a vision of the better, safer, healthier world we can create together. This is their time to help build back better and it is ours too. 

We established The Planet Mark to help individuals in organisations to drive measurable change and enjoy the process. The programme helps unearth the passion and knowledge of people inside every company who care about society and the environment. 

It is incumbent on all of us to consider what is next and what role we can play in creating an economy that helps us tackle the issues of our time, and this is where we must all work togetherThis is a place where organisations, businesses and brands must step in to provide support. This is our space and our time to make change happen.  
 
You could be in one such organisation, and you can choose to be part of this movementby adding your support and your voice hereCommitting your organisation to the Decade of Action and putting sustainability at the heart of your brand and your purpose will encourage others to follow.  We hope you join us. Together we will make a world of difference.

Diverse pieces make a beautiful mosaic

Diverse pieces make a beautiful mosaic

I’m Dave Carlos.

I’m gay. And I identify my gender as male.

It’s rare to say these words out loud. I certainly don’t introduce myself to people this way as it naturally comes out in conversation. I may talk about my last date with a man or mention when I find a guy attractive. These are normal things people talk about because our sexuality is an integral part of who we are, and our culture. We all should feel comfortable talking about these things with friends, family, and colleagues.

Someone once asked me, “If its so difficult, why don’t did you choose to be gay?” To which I responded, “It wasn’t a choice. When did you choose to be straight?” But also, shouldn’t we be looking at ‘why it is difficult’ for someone to just be themselves?

Our sexuality comes naturally to all of us as kids. It’s up to each of us to actively create inclusive-thinking families, workplaces and, an inclusive society. It can be detrimental if we don’t. Research shows that 24% of homeless young people identify as LGBT and 77% believe coming out to their parents was the main factor.

There are over lapping issues for people of different economic backgrounds, races, genders, cultures, abilities and more. I remember when I first went to the gay-friendly area in Toronto where I grew up and I was bombarded by marketing to only white men. I went there because I wanted to feel a part of a wider community, yet all these businesses made me feel I wasn’t welcome. If we positively address how all these elements intersect we can create social justice for everyone.

How does all this affect your business?

A report shows that “more than 57% of LGBT+ employees believe their gender identity and expression or their sexual orientation has slowed their progress at work. And shockingly, only 14% of LGBT+ employees feel fully supported by their employer when it comes to issues like welcoming those who identify as LGBT+.”

If people feel they can’t bring their whole selves to work, they are constantly watching their actions, prounouns, and topics of discussion. They spend so much time and effort worrying if their sexuality will impact their career and faking who they really are, that they are just not doing the best job they can.

If a business primarily employs people with the same life experiences, especially at the leadership level, of course everyone will plan a course for the business that appeals to them, and challenging that course will rarely happen. People from diverse backgrounds and with different life experiences create a wonderful mix that leads to attracting and retaining the best talent, improved innovation, and a better work culture for everyone. These are things customers and investors will notice, especially as it starts to show in your products, services, and communications. A 2020 study by Accenture on The Hidden Value of Culture shows that

  • 68% of employers feel they create inclusive workplaces but only 36% of employees agree
  • Employers think only 2% of employees feel excluded in the workplace, but it’s really 20%
  • If this perception gap was narrowed by 50%, profits could be 33% higher
  • And of course, employers who improve the inclusivity of products, services, and spaces for customers are outperforming their peers

Did you know about 30-40% of LGBT people go back into the closet when they enter the workplace? People want to stay where they work but they require the right environment. The shocking cost to replace an employee can range from £12,000 to over £40,000.

Moreover, the 2018 Open for Business report suggests that “LGBT+ inclusive cities are better placed to develop their global competitiveness, as evidence shows they have stronger ‘innovation ecosystems,’ greater concentrations of skills and talent, and better quality of life. LGBT+ inclusive cities are more likely to become globally connected hubs for high-value businesses.”

We each have a responsibility for becoming better than the society we grew up in. Business is one of the answers to creating this better society. So, what can you do to create an inclusive environment for LGBT people at work?

  1. Listen to your staff – understand the issues in your business. Don’t assume you know everything – it’s not just for LGBT staff, but for everyone that has LGBT people in their lives. A person at my last company said how pleased she was that we were addressing these issues as her daughter had just come out.
  2. Get help – Check out the many resources at Stonewall.org.uk. In addition, we at The Planet Mark have experience helping companies put business strategies and engagement plans in place to create inclusive environments, so we’re happy to work with you.
  3. Create inclusive policies, but you must live and breathe it. A policy is great but it’s not enough to have words on a website if the culture doesn’t change. Business decisions should be based on it, good behaviour should be rewarded, and bad behaviour called out.
  4. Allies are vital: The more straight and cis-gender people that proudly, vocally, and visibly support LGBT at work the better. Allies that will make a real difference in creating a positive culture.
  5. Visibility is important: Having visible communications, LGBT role models, and straight allies go a long way to creating an inclusive work culture. But don’t throw rainbow flags everywhere if you’re not actively trying to change things as a business because it will have the opposite effect.

Globally we are at a social tipping point. Passive inclusivity is no longer an option. For businesses and society to thrive, we need to be positively anti-homophobic and anti-transphobic just as we have to be anti-racist and anti-sexist. Discrimination against people for being who they are is not acceptable. You may not always get it right, I know I don’t, but constant learning, having a positive attitude, and doing your best, is so important.

Diverse pieces really do make a beautiful mosaic. By encouraging diversity in all forms we can create beautiful and inclusive spaces for everyone.

I’m glad to work at The Planet Mark where our work culture is inclusive. However, we are on a constant journey to improve. Watch out for more communications about diversity and inclusion as we begin to put the force in “force for good”.

Together, we will make the world of difference.

Dave Carlos

Director of JustOne
Ambassador to The Planet Mark

Strengthening of our management structure

Strengthening of our management structure

At The Planet Mark, along with our community of clients, we are a collective force for good. Even while we transition to the new normal in the aftermath of the tragedy and impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, 2020-2030 remains the most important decade in human history, the #DecadeOfAction.  

We are aware of how crucial this time is and despite the exceptionally challenging economic circumstance we all find ourselves in, we have taken important steps to strengthen and deepen our commercial position as we continue to grow and support our community of The Planet Mark holders.  

Aligned to this, we are delighted to recognise the superb efforts of our amazing team members through several significant promotions.

Please join us in congratulating: 

Nadia Karagianni on becoming Head of Certification. Nadia has been with The Planet Mark since January 2017 and heads up a robust and expert team of six. Nadia and the certification team are guided by excellence and strive to ensure the highest level of data quality and analysis sits behind The Planet Mark certification, so every holder can be truly proud of their achievement.  
Jonathan Withey on becoming Head of Business Development. Jonathan has been with The Planet Mark since 2019 and has rapidly increased our sales in a short space of time. He heads up a dynamic team of four. Jonathan has an in-depth understanding of the challenges organisations face in embedding sustainability into their core business practices. He is looking forward to helping organisations on their sustainability journeys and growing The Planet Mark community. 
The Planet Mark is the only sustainability certification to incorporate communication as a critical element of success. Communication is critical to provide people around the world with a vision of what is possible in creating a better way of living and the role they can play in making it happen.
We have recognised the need to further enhance our existing outstanding Marketing team through the appointment of Claire Walmsley-Moss as Head of Marketing. Claire and her team will elevate the profile of The Planet Mark, helping us to become the most recognisable, trusted and desirable sustainability certification across the UK, and facilitate our future expansion in Europe and globally.  

Holders of The Planet Mark are bound by a common purpose: to help all people contribute to a thriving planet. We have no choice but to step forward; we see the cost of inaction played out in real-time daily in the news. 

Steve Malkin, CEO shares “We are delighted to make these announcements, promoting from within the business with Nadia and Jonathan becoming heads of their departments in The Planet Mark and being able to attract someone as talented as Claire to the business to lead our marketing team.  Whilst we face much uncertainty, we see a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to do something incredible and set our world on a new trajectory to a zero carbon and healthier society.  That is why we continue to invest into our team and into The Planet Mark certification. 

Together, we can make this decade the most exciting period of action imaginable. And a time when, if people ask where you were when the climate debate became a national and international movement, you can say I stood up and I did my bit. Let’s make this the decade we put a stop to climate change. Join us in the #DecadeOfAction, where together we will make a world of difference. 

It’s time to Make a World of Difference – An open letter 

It’s time to Make a World of Difference – An open letter 

George Floyd. We must say his name. 

His name is roaring across the world. His name makes us feel anger and anguish; and rightly soPeople are losing their lives and live in fear. His murder represents hundreds of years of oppression, trauma and injustice Black and Brown people have dealt with on a daily basisand not just in the US. In the UK, Grenfell victims are still struggling, the Windrush generation still needs support, and symbols of slavery still need to be torn down. Racism has no borders. 

At The Planet Mark, the murder of George Floyd has made us examine ourselves. We have constantly said that our purpose is to empower all people to create a thriving planet; and together we are a collective force for good. To achieve our purpose, we have focused our attention on ending the climate crisis and broadly creating social value. Today we recognise that it is not enough. It has been in our DNA to treat everyone with respect and compassion, but not being racist is not enough. As we learn, we grow, and we change. 

Today we commit to being positively anti-racist. When Covid-19 hit, we, like every business, had to evolve quickly, and the murder of George Floyd is having the same impact. We will not be bystandersOver the last couple of weeks, we started educating ourselves, we had open conversations about racism and discrimination as a team, and we have started putting processes in place to get our house in order and help our members do the same. 

We also commit to being positively anti-discriminatory. Within our team we shared experiences of discrimination because of age, disability, gender, pregnancy, maternity, height, race, immigration, accents, socio-economic backgrounds, sex, and sexual orientation. This was an eye-opener for us all. These stories came from 20person team, so imagine the issues faced by everyone in the world. 

It is self-evident that discrimination is not segmented. When discriminations intersect in one person, the trauma multiplies, and we must recognise that Black and Brown people often experience the most discrimination in our world. For example, climate racism exists because those affected the most are people in countries with primarily Black and Brown populations. Moreover, black women are most affected overall. 

It is clear that now is the time for action. As with all things, we will act in line with The Planet Mark Values: We are transformative, ambitious, optimisticcollaborative, and robust. We are at the start of our journey, and we will do more, but for now, here are our immediate plans: 

We are putting the force in “Force for good” 

As we work to solve some of the world’s biggest problems and create a thriving planet, we will take a stronger stance on all mattersincluding racism. We will use our reach and influence to urgently change people’s hearts and minds, therefore you will see a change in our tone of voice while staying positive at all times. The death of George Floyd has lit a fire under us, as we hope it has others.  

We will transform ourselves 

Our goal is to create a happy and healthy culture, where people can bring their whole selves to work. 

  • We will learn by listening to our team, educating ourselves, and bring in experts to help us improve quickly. 
  • We will be empathetic: We will let ourselves feel the emotions associated with injustice so we will be empowered to take serious action. We know that a connection with nature makes people take climate action, so feelings are just as important as knowledge. 
  • We will be ambitious: We will set targets that lead to serious action. From our hiring processes to procurement, we want to go beyond best practice so that we can move the dial quickly. 

We will collaborate with our members 

Our goal is to help our members to positively transform their businesses. 

  • We will listen and learn from our members while providing information, education and forums on anti-racismanti-discrimination and inclusion and equality. 
  • We will examine our services and communications through a lens of social value and social justice just as we have through an environmental lensThis means exploring how we can add diversity and inclusion as part of our measurement of sustainability. 
  • We will work to address more of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals as a business and support our clients where we can. 

We will work to dismantle systems of racism and discrimination 

Our goal is to help fix systems that lead to racism and social injustice. This will take serious education on our part before we act, but we are committing to make a start. Part of this work will be to broaden the impact and deeply understand all 17 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Sustainability is inter-linked and co-dependent. 

We will bring about change through direct action and helping our members to do the same. For example, we need to understand how people of colour access our profession and work backwards. We will ask questions like “Why are we not receiving job applications from more people of colour?”, “What are the socio-economic factors preventing them from gaining the education and experience we need”, and “What can we do to help younger generations find opportunities to learn the skills we need”. 

Positive systemic change will directly benefit our clients too. For example, they will be able to access great talent from a wider pool of people, innovate consistently as a diverse team breeds diverse thought, future-proof their business against social crises, and build a positive reputation as they contribute to a thriving planet. 

None of this is enough, but this is a start. We are committing to learn, feel and do more. We want to hear from our members and the wider world on what we can do to make positive change, so please get in touch with us. 

We are in the business of positively changing the world. Today we recognise we must broaden the scope of our work internally, with our members, and around the world. Together, we will make a world of difference. 

Prologis cuts carbon by 22.5% this year with The Planet Mark

Prologis cuts carbon by 22.5% this year with The Planet Mark

Prologis, a leading developer and owner of logistics property in the UK, have achieved certification to The Planet Mark.

This is its ninth year of business carbon footprint reporting. Prologis’ total carbon footprint in the year ending December 2019 was 179.4 tCO2e, a decrease of an impressive 22.5% from the year ending 2018. The relative carbon footprint was 3.8 tCO2e per employee, a decrease of 20.0% compared to the year ending 2018.

Prologis first calculated the carbon footprint of its Solihull and London office operations for the year ending December 2011 and set a target to reduce emissions by 5% annually. This year’s footprint includes emissions from energy use in the building, from waste, water, business travel and hotel accommodation. Electricity emissions decreased by 16%, and natural gas emissions decreased by 78% due to Prologis moving from our old Monkspath Hall Road site to a new office building.

Steve Malkin, Founder and CEO of The Planet Mark, said: “Prologis’ results speak for themselves. After nine years with us at The Planet Mark, I am pleased and inspired by the company’s ability to cut its carbon footprint so effectively. From the construction site through to the thriving communities it creates, everyone feels the benefits of sustainable property developments. The property industry is ripe for sustainable change and more companies should follow in the footsteps of Prologis.”

First year certification to The Planet Mark is based on the commitment to continuous improvement in sustainability in its business operations by measuring and reducing its carbon footprint and engaging its stakeholders.

Prologis is committed to embedding sustainability into every aspect of its business operations: from the buildings it creates to the way it engages with the communities close to its developments. Prologis is also a business committed to helping others start their own sustainability journeys, which is why it works with its supply chain, customers, employees and local schools to help reduce our collective impact on the world in which we live.

The construction and property sectors are major carbon emitters, with the built environment contributing to approximately 20% of the UK’s carbon footprint. From managing and retrofitting existing properties to the responsible construction of new property, the entire industry must revolutionise to hit the world’s carbon targets. Part of this change must focus on reducing property company’s own operations and carbon emissions.