Managing Director at MYBLUEPLANET
What is your impact background if any?
I completed my Master studies in International Business and Management at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands. There, I have taken courses in basic macro-economic concepts and micro-economic topics of strategy, innovation, entrepreneurship, and finance.
Most important, I learned how to work well in teams, to appreciate and respect various characters and different views, and that good collaboration and co-creation results not only in better outcomes, but also in a lot of joy and growth.
As I have always had an affinity for different cultures and places, I sought out semesters abroad programs and volunteer opportunities when I wasn’t studying or working. This school of life really opened my eyes to the similarities we share across our global society and to the differences among cultures and geographies regarding our relations towards each other and nature.
Therefore, I based my Master thesis on the Triple Bottom Line and gained further insight into the interdependence between economy, state, and society in the context of Sumatra. As far as communications goes, I attained an additional degree in Marketing through a distance study program at Fernuniversität Hagen in Germany.
"I witnessed how strong social bonds between local business owners and the surrounding community can bear mutual benefits, how good environmental intentions can be impeded by governmental (in)action and how innovative thinkers with grit always find well-functioning solutions through bricolage."
What do you do at your organization in terms of positive impact and how do you monitor and report the outcomes and what are the goals?
We at MYBLUEPLANET inspire people to make a contribution for climate protection. Together, we seek creative and practical solutions and bring them to life with projects that reduce CO2 in Switzerland.
Currently, we are active with five engagements targeted at private individuals and organisations, including schools, event organizers, and firms.
One of our engagements, “Klimaschule”, is a four-year program, which educates pupils on climate change and protection in four areas: energy, mobility, food and consumption.
Besides offering theoretical input seminars executed through partners, we also provide hands-on action days for the entire school or for school classes.
It is of great importance that our youngest generation grows up with a climate conscious mindset.
Another engagement, “ClimateLab”, is a two-day workshop targeted at apprentices to learn about climate change and protection hands on. The goal of each workshop is for the apprentices to develop their own projects and implement them together with their employer.
Our communication campaign “ClimateActions” is targeted at every person who wants to start change their habits for climate protection and would like a bit of help to know where and how to start.
This campaign provides suggestions for concrete climate actions in everyday life.
Our reporting is two-fold: we measure quantitative indicators such as CO2-reduction, number of participants, and people reached. We also measure qualitative indicators and seek active feedback from our participants and from people who have been in touch with us through different mediums. We do so with feedback surveys, with face-to-face meetings, or via our social media channels.
What do you think does an organization need if it wants to start introducing CSR/Social Impact/Sustainability practices?
In my perspective, any organization needs a good culture which incorporates these aspects.
If an open and inclusive culture is cultivated, where people, planet and profit are of importance, everything else will follow.
It will be far more productive, proactive, and fun to introduce sustainability practices, if the right culture is in place.
Do you feel that differentiating yourself through impact has brought an added value to your business and reduces risks? In what way?
We are an NGO and NPO. Our core business is essentially making a positive impact. Our differentiation is that everyone who knows us can be sure that we are committed to the cause. We do not have market competitive salaries nor other bonuses you may find on the free market. We, the MYBLUEPLANET team and volunteers, are passionate about our cause and therefore try our best to contribute to our projects. As an NGO and NPO, everyone we partner with, including our suppliers, try to meet us halfway.
Do you see a change in behavior in your target audience and consumers?
The awareness of climate change issues increased among consumers, and particularly in developed countries. This is due, in large part, to the efforts of the climate strike movement.
However, awareness alone does not naturally translate into action. Now is the time when increased awareness needs to be translated into serious action at political, economic, social and individual level.
How do new technologies and this digital age influence your work? Do you use new technologies?
Social Media, personalized newsletters, blogs, organic and paid search, our website and our online media partners such as RONORP increase our proximity with our community. They help us inform, educate, and connect with our volunteers, members, partners, potential partners, and our beloved fans.
Over 100 wonderful volunteers help us increase our impact and we are constantly looking for candidates for various positions.
That’s why online job and volunteering portals are also very valuable to us and constantly lead us to great candidates.
Newer technologies play a major role in the improvement of our internal efficiencies and help us minimize errors. For project and task management, Trello is a good tool for us. To schedule, monitor, and evaluate our communication, we use Hootsuite, Google Analytics and Mailchimp. Technology that is simplifying processes, or solving existing problems is of great help. We refrain from using technology just for technology’s sake.
In your view, what’s the biggest challenge when it comes to marketing CSR/Social Impact/Sustainability efforts to the world in a more active way than merely through your sustainability report?
Often, the emotional appeal of sustainability efforts is extremely important for fundraising and media attention. This can make it more difficult to finance activities that do not generate much emotional appeal but are just as important as emotionally attractive solutions.