Achtung Baby

Shaun McCarthy

July 27, 2010   |   Posted by Shaun McCarthy

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Siemens AG recently hosted a meeting of their main board and CEOs of all their global business divisions in London. The event was themed around urban sustainability and they invited a small group of movers and shakers on the London sustainability agenda to get involved. I was honoured to be part of that group.

It seems to me that this global corporation totally understands the relationship between the success of their business, their relationship with stakeholders and the sustainable development agenda. However, the key to this success is their willingness to listen and properly engage with their client base. They have worked out that sustainable urban infrastructure has an important role to play for their business and they want to understand the context of sustainability for the world’s great cities, starting with London. They learned a lot, heard speeches from Boris Johnson (and Ken Livingstone), visited the Olympic Park and facilitated discussions with a very wide range of stakeholders, including the Carbon Trust, Forum for the Future and London focused organisations. All this will influence the objectives they set and the way in which they expect their supply chain to behave. There are eight people in Siemens’ management board and one of them has responsibility for CSR and supply chain globally; an indication of how well Siemens recognise the importance of supply chains in delivering the sustainable future of the business.

In the evening I was invited to a very swanky dinner at the top of the Gherkin building in the City of London. Looking west you can look down at the dome of St Paul’s standing proud among the skyscrapers of the City. I was tempted to mention the war, but I didn’t!

Shaun McCarthy

July 2010

Previously published by Supply Management magazine

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