Are stakeholders part of your problem or part of your success?
The one-dimensional shareholder value approach has been discredited not only since 2006, when Harvard professors Porter and Kramer published their idea of "creating shared value" for the first time. Already much earlier, responsible entrepreneurs and managers realised that their companies did not act in a vacuum, but rather as part of a dense network of environmental spheres and stakeholders. Companies could be successful in the long term only if their decisions also took account of the needs and concerns of the stakeholders. Also at the social and political level, involving stakeholders is key: Switzerland and its political system are still considered a symbol of constructive dialogue among interest groups with different arguments, opinions, and demands, from which accepted and sustainable solutions ultimately arise.
Stakeholder dialogues as the trademark of BHP
Since the Rio Earth Summit in 1992 and our founder's experience at the time in establishing the World Business Council for Sustainable Development
, stakeholder dialogues have been part of our company's DNA. We have initiated, chaired, and moderated numerous dialogue platforms and shaped their content. Our work on behalf of practice-oriented and professionally moderated stakeholder dialogues began in 2001 with the establishment and management of The Sustainability Forum Zurich (TSF, only available in German)
. TSF – as we called it internally – has meanwhile become part of Swiss Sustainable Finance
, of which BHP is also a founding member. Other milestones have been the Energy Trialogue Switzerland (only available in German)
, which helped shape Swiss energy policy during a crucial phase (2007 to 2014), and the organisation of dialogue events on behalf of the Fondation Guilé at the World Economic Forum in Davos. The information portal "Compasso" (only available in German)
, we co-founded, is more active than ever, offering employers key information and services in the field of occupational integration of people with disabilities.
Stakeholder management for companies
Our clients in the private sector also benefit from our experience in designing and moderating challenging stakeholder processes on social issues. For instance, we support their CSR and issue management
by identifying and surveying key stakeholders, whether in person or online, as well as by developing and organising discussion forums as part of focused exchanges of knowledge, idea and strategy workshops, and negotiations. We always have a vigilant eye for creating shared value, and it gives us great pleasure to moderate constructive discussions on CSR and sustainability.