Develop Routines with Stakeholders to Drive Environmental Performance

Develop Routines with Stakeholders to Drive Environmental Performance

NBS Lauren Rakowski June 7, 2010
Good routines help companies ensure stakeholder cooperation. This cooperation is essential for developing capabilities to improve environmental performance. Companies can create effective routines by allowing stakeholders with the most influence over decisions to help identify problems. They can also use constant feedback from internal and external stakeholders to come up with solutions to improve environmental performance, and gain insight into the effectiveness of changes.

Background

Companies are constantly learning by developing new capabilities. These capabilities may affect existing operations, such as fine-tuning an existing technology to reduce emissions. Or, they may lead to new operations, such as in the conception of a new plant design to reduce pollution. Previous research has not considered the power that important stakeholders have to affect these types of learning. This paper looks at two major companies' routines to address how and why stakeholders affect company learning.

Findings

Implications for Managers

Implications for Researchers

Future studies can emphasize the potential impact of stakeholder power. These studies can take into account variables that mediate the relationship between stakeholder power and organizational learning, like company ambitions, routines, institutional contexts, and personal attributes like leadership and skills.

Methods

This study compared the environmental management practices of two large Netherlands companies in 1999 (one in food and one in chemicals) with strong environmental performance. Data were collected from 19 interviews with managers and influential stakeholders, as well as field observations. Secondary sources included financial and environmental reports, government policies, periodicals and brochures.
Roome, Nigel J., & Wijen, Frank. (2006). Stakeholder Power and Organizational Learning in Corporate Environmental Management. Organization Studies, 27(2): 235-263.

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