Enabling Smart Projects
Our main product is called Smart Engagement. It means doing business (and by business we mean your main activities, be it for profit, not-for-profit, public service, etc.) by integrating stakeholder engagement into strategy, governance and implementation. The result of integrating Smart Engagement is Smart Business: a highly innovative business that is financially viable, technically feasible, environmentally compatible and supported by its stakeholders. It is created one project at a time.
We offer two ranges of services to clients who want to achieve successful outcomes through Smart Engagement:
- Consultancy and implementation assistance for organisations requiring solid support from their stakeholders (internal and/or external) as they go through change or project development. This includes developing a focused team, a joined strategy, engagement capacity, co-design processes and joint projects. We help you build a high performing team to be successful in project planning and consenting.
- Professional development and coaching services for business, government bodies and communities who wish to proactively cultivate stakeholder support.
We have tried, tested and successfully implemented Smart Engagement in a wide range of organisations in difficult environments in throughout Europe, including challenging areas linked to natural resources, energy, infrastructure, tourism and sustainable development. We help you help yourself to deliver engagement for better outcomes for all.
By following a Smart Engagement process you also fulfill the relevant requirements of leading responsible investment standards including the Equator Principles, OECD Guidelines, IFC Performance Standards, UN Global Compact, UN Sustainable Development Goals, ISO26000, AA1000SES, Principles for Responsible Investment, Aarhus and Espoo Conventions, Impact Assessments, GRI and the IIRC’s Framework.
In the past, project design and management teams were primarily focused on economic, technical. and permitting feasibility. More recently, environmental concerns have been increasingly included in the decision-making process. However, public acceptability tended to be seriously considered only after key project decisions had been made. Organisations then focused on defending the decisions they announced, leaving stakeholders with a choice between supporting or opposing the resulting project proposal. Given the current low level of trust between businesses, government and communities, when they don’t feel appropriately engaged in decisions that concern them, people often go into opposition. More and more project proponents are now experiencing significantly increased business risks, or, worse, project failure.
Projects that have applied Smart Engagement have proven that stakeholder risks to projects are mitigated, and benefits are gained for all, through quality and inclusive decision-making. Decisions that from the very beginning are not only technically and economically viable, but also environmentally compatible and locally supported. Such decisions result in what we term Smart Projects. Smart Projects enable outcomes desired by all levels of society. This reduces business risks, creates win-win opportunities and builds shared value, with better outcomes for all.