Frequently asked questions

What are our 3 focus regions?

In keeping with our cultural footprint ambitions, we overlay all our strategic frameworks and partnership guidelines with a geographical cultural contrast to encourage cross-regional empathy and the practice of emotional intelligence.

We operate in ASEAN (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia), EU (Stuttgart, Germany), North America (Vancouver/Montreal, Canada) through our remote team members and partners.

What does CSR/ESG/SRI acronyms mean?

Our RULE of 3 career development program is a dedicated mentor/mentee knowledge exchange framework that develops talent in sustainability.

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is a self-regulating business model that helps a company be socially accountable — to itself, its stakeholders, and the public. By practicing corporate social responsibility, also called corporate citizenship, companies can be conscious of the kind of impact they are having on all aspects of society including economic, social, and environmental.

Environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria are a set of standards for a company’s operations that socially conscious investors use to screen potential investments. Environmental criteria consider how a company performs as a steward of nature. Social criteria examine how it manages relationships with employees, suppliers, customers, and the communities where it operates. Governance deals with a company’s leadership, executive pay, audits, internal controls, and shareholder rights.

Socially responsible investing (SRI). An investment that is considered socially responsible because of the nature of the business the company conducts. Common themes for socially responsible investments include avoiding investment in companies that produce or sell addictive substances (like alcohol, gambling, and tobacco) and seeking out companies engaged in social justice, environmental sustainability and alternative energy/clean technology efforts. Socially responsible investments can be made in individual companies or through a socially conscious mutual fund or exchange-traded fund (ETF).

What is Impact Investing vs ESG Investing?

ESG investing is no longer a niche strategy nor is it a strategy based solely on one’s preferences or beliefs. Many “traditional” institutional investors are now employing ESG strategies because they think that it will help them understand the risks of the firms in which they invest. For example, ESG can give insights into a corporation’s systematic risk, relative risk, reputation risk, litigation risk, supply chain risk, corruption risk, estimation risk, downside (tail) risk, political risk and climate risk. Traditional institutional investors are also starting ESG funds, both mutual funds and ETFs, in order to attract younger investors such as millennials who have strong preferences toward investing in high ESG corporations. Impact investing is similar to ESG investing in that the investor has an interest in the ultimate environmental or social outcome of the investment. However, impact investing is centered on intentional social or environmental impact while earning a financial return. According to the latest Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) survey in 2018, impact investments among their survey participants totaled $228 billion. This number has also grown dramatically over time and is expected to keep growing.

How important is ESG Investing, also to future sustainability-driven talent?

ESG investing has grown rapidly across the world over the past two decades. According to the SIF Foundation, in 1995, the U.S. sustainable and responsible investment universe had approximately $639 billion in assets under management. At the beginning of 2018, there existed about $11.6 trillion in US-domiciled assets in which managers apply various environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria in their investment analysis and portfolio selection. ESG investing has been growing even more rapidly in Europe. According to a survey by RBC of institutional investors and consultants, 77% of those in Europe think that an ESG approach to investing mitigates risk and 51% think that it is a source of alpha. A number of third parties such as MSCI, Morningstar, Bloomberg, Thomson International, are providing ESG ratings for corporations and for mutual funds. Morningstar reported last year that investors are avoiding traditional mutual funds that have low ESG scores. The interest in ESG investing has grown so high that corporations are even hiring ESG specialists to help them in talking to their investors and to the rating firms. In addition, the integration of ESG into the investment process has been added as a component to the CFA exam. What is even more exciting about this field is that there still exists ambiguity regarding the parameters and weights defining ESG for a company or portfolio and there exists ongoing development and conversation around the structure. Thus, the field is growing in terms of job possibilities and making a difference.

What is Mentoring, and/or the expectations of being a Mentor?

“Mentoring is a two-way process with the mentor having as much to gain as the mentee. The crux is to encourage both partners to contribute freely and operate as equals.” Hay, 1995 Definitions of a mentor vary. Consider the following: “influential individuals with advanced experience and knowledge who are committed to providing upward mobility and support to their protégés’ careers” – Ragins, 1997 “guide, counselor, and sponsor” – Levinson et al. (1978) According to the American Psychological Association, a mentor fulfills two main functions for the mentee: 1) a career-related function, providing advice to enhance the mentee’s professional performance and development, and 2) a psychosocial function, as a role model and support system for the mentee. Mentoring is distinguished by its long-term impact in a broader learning context and by its influence on a company’s ability to gain competitive advantage through personnel development. Mentoring is a long-term investment in human capital development. Some definitions distinguish mentoring from other developmental relationships, such as counseling and coaching, by the emotional components of the relationship – the need for trust between the mentor and the mentee – or the hierarchical distance between the mentor and the mentee. A mentor-mentee relationship has 4 distinct stages which is inculcated into our RULE of 3 career developement program structure:

  1. The initiation stage is where formal or informal matching occurs.
  2. Cultivation is the early stage of learning and development within the mentoring relationship.
  3. Separation occurs at the end of a program/relationship (hopefully after program goals have been met).
  4. At the redefinition stage, the mentor-mentee relationship may transform into a collegial or more social friendship.

Relevant Terms & Acronyms

Daily average number of agency workers (FTE) Total number of hours worked by all agency workers in a country over a period of one year divided by the average number of hours worked over a period of one year by a worker with a fulltime job with an open-ended contract. Career management Main service segments are individual outplacement services, executive outplacement services, group outplacement services and other employment transition services. In these segments, outplacement services companies provide a range of employment and career services. These include resume writing, interview skills, job search strategies, coaching and career guidance. Employers generally pay all of the costs associated with these services. Managed Services Provider (MSP) MSP is a service whereby a company takes on primary responsibility for managing an organization’s contingent workforce program. Typical responsibilities of an MSP include overall program management, reporting and tracking, supplier selection and management, order distribution and often consolidated billing. The vast majority of MSPs also provide their clients with a vendor management system (VMS) and may have a physical presence on the client’s site. An MSP may or may not be independent of a staffing supplier. Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) A service by a third-party specialist provider, to assume the role of the client’s recruiting department by owning and managing part or all of its recruitment process and related recruitment supply chain partner relationships, provide the necessary skills, activities, tools, technologies, and process methodologies. Private employment services / Employment industry Agency work is usually one of several other HR services provided by recruitment and employment agencies, along with direct recruitment, career management, RPO & MSP. The broad range of these services are called private employment services. The employment agency provides a professional service to a user company by taking over (a part of) the recruitment and HR process. In this sense, private employment services are comparable to other professional and business services such as auditing & accounting, communications & marketing, facilities management etc. Source: Economic Report 2019, The World Employment Confederation

What are example careers in environmental sustainability?

As our population becomes more environmentally aware, a host of job opportunities in the sustainability and green jobs industry are becoming available. From sustainable agriculture to green business to conservation and nature jobs, all employees have some core tasks and values in common:

  • Provide support for a range of client environmental management needs
  • Understanding of environmental policies at the local to federal level
  • Audit client operations on a regular basis to ensure compliance
  • Prepare written recommendations and critical paperwork
  • Submit correspondence, reports and appeals
  • Liaise with regulatory agencies and individuals as required
  • Manage and review environmental documents
  • Use investigation and remediation reports
  • Pay attention to quality assurance details
  • Work to coordinate challenging issues whose scope extends beyond the boundaries of the project at hand
  • Work directly with government and civilian clients
  • Possess or pursue relevant certification like LEED or its equivalent where applicable
  • Consult on policy and rationale where appropriate
  • Be comfortable in a nimble team environment in order to stretch funding and human resources
Senior sustainability and green job roles are similar to other management roles, with one key difference - these experienced professionals place environmentally sustainable solutions at the core of their business strategy. Careers do vary widely depending on the job, however most senior sustainability professionals will be asked to perform the following tasks at some point in their career:
  • Design outcome measurements for green initiatives
  • Understand the impact of each sustainability program or measure in order to accurately strategize
  • Work with compliance professionals to meet technical guidelines
  • Provide leadership and strategy
  • Vet research directions prior to employee pursuit
  • Provide expert environmental advice to assist clients' planning efforts
  • Define the scope of a project and its benchmarks
  • Track projects schedules, costs and deliverable items
  • Participate in public meetings and hearings
  • Respond to public comments
  • Evaluate employee and contractor performance
  • Provision project, material and human resources
Source: Environmental Science.Org

What is tri-sectoral leadership?

The critical challenges society faces — such as water scarcity, access to education, and the rising cost of healthcare — increasingly require the business, government and nonprofit sectors to work together to create lasting solutions. But this is only possible if the senior executives of our leading institutions are what Dominic Barton, Worldwide Managing Director of McKinsey & Company, refers to as “tri-sector athletes” — leaders able to engage and collaborate across all three sectors. Regardless of their backgrounds, we have identified six characteristics these leaders have:

  • Balanced motivations. A desire to create public value no matter where they work, combining their motivations to wield influence (often in government), have social impact (often in nonprofits) and generate wealth (often in business)
  • Transferable skills. A set of distinctive skills valued across sectors, such as quantitative analytics, strategic planning and stakeholder management
  • Contextual intelligence. A deep empathy of the differences within and between sectors, especially those of language, culture and key performance indicators
  • Integrated networks. A set of relationships across sectors to draw on when advancing their careers, building top teams, or convening decision-makers on a particular issue
  • Prepared mind. A willingness to pursue an unconventional career that zigzags across sectors, and the financial readiness to take potential pay cuts from time to time
  • Intellectual thread. Holistic subject matter expertise on a particular tri-sector issue by understanding it from the perspective of each sector
Source: HBR

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