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Episode 30: Navigating the Journey to Sustainability at Nestlé

Molly Fogarty, Head of Corporate & Government Affairs and Sustainability at Nestlé Zone North America, joins host, Chris Thornton, for this episode of Change@Work. In this episode, the two have a candid conversation about Molly‘s own journey to success and sustainability, navigating through the external perception of Nestlé’s sustainability efforts and how to get buy-in from all levels of the organization to drive sustainability goals.



This transcript was automatically generated with artificial intelligence. It’s in the queue to go through a review with human eyes!

00;00;00;00 – 00;00;37;20

And hello and welcome back to Change@Work. I’m your host, Chris Thornton, a senior principal here at Daggerwing Group. In this episode, we are talking with someone I’ve known for five years, Molly Fogarty, who’s the head of Corporate and government Affairs and sustainability at Nestlé Zone North America. I’ve worked with Molly closely on developing narratives, working with her teams, on what success looks like, and I’ve really been able to see that team in action.

00;00;37;22 – 00;01;05;05

Pretty amazing stuff there. Based on her title, she’s got a long title there. We’re going to focus in on the sustainability piece. We’re going to talk about ESG and what is doing for years. Global businesses have been focused on why they need a sustainability strategy and it’s so important, absolutely important. They’ve definitely been focusing on the what what are they going to do to meet their sustainability, environmental goals, etc..

00;01;05;07 – 00;01;26;12

And those deadlines are really important to help drive action. What’s not always been focused on until right now is So how are we going to do that now? That’s definitely an exaggeration because I think if Molly were here, she would say, Well, that’s all we think about is how are we going to do this? It’s so hard to do this.

00;01;26;15 – 00;01;48;25

And it is. And you’ll hear Molly talk about this is really hard stuff, but it’s stuff that means something. That’s the stuff that has to be done. And especially for Nestlé and other companies like Nestlé, if they don’t get this right. Being able to source ingredients, source materials to sell to consumers if they don’t get this right, all of that starts to go away.

00;01;48;25 – 00;02;14;27

So this is absolutely not just mission critical for the world’s mission, critical for their business. It’s really at the heart of their business. Nestle is one of those leaders that’s not been neglecting on the how piece of this. So in this episode, Molly and I discuss how they’ve been at the forefront of sustainability for years, everything from virgin plastic reduction to the latest news about how they’re investing to help bring region agriculture practices to wheat farms.

00;02;15;01 – 00;02;45;00

In some pretty cool announcements that came out just after we recorded this episode. So you can check those out and what they’re doing with DiGiorno Crusts in particular. And it’s because of the incredible work that Nestle has done that Molly was featured in a Harvard Business Review Analytic Services report, The Daggerwing, sponsored on how to actually operationalize your sustainability strategy, the barriers companies are facing, and what leaders in sustainability, just like Nestling, are doing right and what they need to do more of.

00;02;45;02 – 00;03;04;04

Molly was kind enough to sit down with us, give us even more of her time to talk with me about all of these topics and more. Her including our love of Alan Cumming and his performance in Cabaret. Anyway, it’s pretty wide ranging. Take a listen. Molly, thanks for joining. Thank you so much for having me. Yeah, this is going to be good.

00;03;04;04 – 00;03;25;13

We just had lunch. Yeah, I mean, everything’s better with lunch. Everything is better with lunch. And someone gave us cake. It’s a Friday. We had cake. We had chicken. We’re sad. Yeah, we’re. So now we’re going to have a really good conversation. We’re going to get into talking about sustainability. Talk about your work. Talk about the people of Nestlé.

00;03;25;13 – 00;03;45;00

But before we do that, we want to make sure that we get to know you pretty well. Okay. What’s one thing that’s like making you happy or excited recently? I am really excited by challenges that don’t have clear answers. And I’m really living in a space right now where we’re pioneering in all sorts of things. I don’t know how to do it.

00;03;45;05 – 00;04;03;08

And, you know, I think that’s really exciting. I like to MacGyver things together that you didn’t really ask for all of this because I think it is so much fun to have a challenge with no clear path to fix it, nor the tools to do it. And so I like to duct tape and baling wire things together and make magic.

00;04;03;15 – 00;04;24;24

And I’m doing a lot of that right now. Duct tape and baling wire. Yeah, that sounds Midwest. Yeah. Yeah. Plans. Yes. Nebraska. Born and raised, but on the East Coast for 25 years. So maybe I need to update some of my lingo, but. Yes. Not at all. It resonates with me and it works for me. Growing up in Indiana, I know exactly which.

00;04;24;27 – 00;04;44;21

Did you ever bail? Yeah. Andy Tassel. yeah. Yeah. Same. Yeah. It’s the worst. And it was a secondary job because I actually worked at the zoo starting in Omaha, starting as a 14 year old. But yeah, so in the summer, for sure, to make extra money, we both did bailing Andy tasks. Like, were you a straw person or were you a high percentage?

00;04;44;24 – 00;05;07;23

Yeah. Straw is painful. It well yeah so we grew we and so then we would also yeah you know bale the straw. Yeah terrible terrible, horrible cut up. I react for some reasons. Yeah. Yeah. And I have never met a bug that didn’t enjoy me very much. So it’s painful. Did you know? And you do. But maybe our listeners don’t know.

00;05;07;25 – 00;05;24;29

Corn will cut you. Yes, I do know. And I probably have scars if I look close enough from it. Yeah. In Nebraska, there’s a fair amount of corn. Do you want to explain detangling or not? No, I think it’s more fun if I sort of left there. That’s fair. All right, look it up. Google. You’ve got Google in front of you.

00;05;24;29 – 00;05;47;04

Look it up. Have you recently been to like a performance, a concert, a something? Yeah, I’m super crazy about live music. I’m super crazy about live entertainment. So you want to know the thing that I most recently did? You want to share? Well, I’m the open book, so I am friends with the husband of Ari SHAPIRO from NPR.

00;05;47;04 – 00;06;10;27

Wow. And he has been doing this really fabulous cabaret show with Alan Cumming. And what yeah, it’s amazing. It’s called Akinloye. And I just saw it for the second time last week in Annapolis, Maryland. And it is like, it’s amazing. And I’ve really grown to love Alan Cumming so much more as I’ve seen him in this performance. You learn a lot about him as a human, and then I had to go buy all of his books.

00;06;10;27 – 00;06;32;23

I am really fascinated by him. He is such a top talent. I love musicals. I never shared this before, and to hear him in this very free flowing and just be able to like, launch into song and do Barbra Streisand or whatever, it sort of tickles his fancy was extraordinary. But yeah, I love live entertainment. I see a lot of shows.

00;06;33;01 – 00;06;59;02

I have a lot of summer concert tickets. I’m really excited about that part of my life. You’re out there. I am. That’s really good. Yeah. So, Molly, let’s get into this HBO report. Yeah, You were very nice enough to volunteer to to talk to the HPR team about the work that you’re doing with your background. And we’ve talked privately about your background in political science.

00;06;59;02 – 00;07;33;00

Yeah, government relations. I know about your corporate affairs work. Yeah. What was your journey into sustainability? Because it’s not necessarily a clear like, Well, of course, let’s ask Molly. No, it’s not clear. I love this. So this is a very little known fact. Up until this point, I was a failed environmental studies major in college, so I, I paid my way through the University of Kansas, and I wanted very badly to be an environmental lawyer, specialized in water law.

00;07;33;03 – 00;07;56;06

And my background in the Midwest, it’s water such I mean, if you think about it, it’s wars get fought over it. Yeah. And even as a sort of dumb, dumb 17 year old, I understood it was a really interesting space. And so when I went to school, I started taking all of these science courses in geology and, and the sort of basic requisite classes.

00;07;56;06 – 00;08;17;07

And I struggled, even though I was really good in science, in have sort of a natural proclivity for some of these things. I just wasn’t getting it. And for two years I really like took terrible grades and I just was not cutting it. All right. And it’s tough when you’re paying your own way and yeah, you’re paying your own way.

00;08;17;07 – 00;08;42;21

And at some point I realized that I was going to end up in I was going to be a fifth year senior and I didn’t want to work for the university. I actually had to work security at night to pay my way through. And this won’t be as funny because you don’t know my physical attributes, but I’m five foot zero in not intimidating and being campus security and working all night and then going to school is like no fun because you miss the parties and all the good stuff.

00;08;42;23 – 00;09;04;29

So I was super motivated by money and by the fact that I wanted to have a life to get out of school. So I happened to take a political science class just as one of my electives. And, you know, full disclosure, I just nailed it. And I barely read the book like, I got it. I understood it. It’s very much a human science.

00;09;04;29 – 00;09;19;02

It was something that I’m pretty good with people, and I really fell in love with it. I got into I then I just started taking all the classes and it did not take me long to realize I should shift my major to something that was natural to me. And it’s actually a feedback that I give to people I mentor all the time.

00;09;19;02 – 00;09;38;18

It’s like you probably shouldn’t pick a first job. That’s something that’s super hard for you. Maybe you pick something that you’re naturally inclined at because it can be excellent and you can really, without all the effort, you can use your extra effort to do other things. So I had this deep love of sort of environmental studies and taking care of things.

00;09;38;18 – 00;10;07;21

And it’s not that I’m like crunchy or I just believe that your resources are limited and it’s important for us to think about them in our impact in the things that we do. And so, you know, fast forward, you know, 27 years, I am in this position at Nestlé. Being a Swiss company, we’ve always had. Sustainability is an important part of the way we do business and making sure that we’re limiting our impact on the communities in which we operate.

00;10;07;23 – 00;10;32;08

But at the same time, we were making very audacious goals, setting goals, a future for getting to, you know, net zero and really being focused and putting ourselves out there in such a big way. That wasn’t just what was in our our own space scopes one and two, the things that we control, but really getting into scope. Three, which is a place that not everyone has gone yet.

00;10;32;11 – 00;10;54;10

And, you know, being a giant corporation, getting organized around this type of work takes a while. It’s a very cross-functional group and honestly, I just sort of barged in and I forced my way in because I believed that I had something to add. And it wasn’t just my interest in sustainability was really the fact that I do have this human component.

00;10;54;10 – 00;11;14;29

I do understand how to work with audiences across. I do understand how to knit together teams that don’t necessarily make sense and this is a huge undertaking. That was really exciting to me because there was no path and sort of referencing back to my interest in pioneering new space, I was like, This is it. I think I’m born for this type of work.

00;11;15;01 – 00;11;33;21

And I’ve had the just great luxury of being able to lead this work for Nestlé for the last three years. And it is the most challenging and rewarding work that I’ve done in my 20 years with the company. When you think about that 17 year old, 18 year old failing her way through college, what would you tell that person now?

00;11;33;21 – 00;12;01;21

You already gave great advice, like maybe don’t start with the hardest, right? But what would you tell that person now? I mean, I think most of the best lessons I’ve had in life have to do with perseverance. And for many years I wasn’t very upfront about my failures. And largely I have figured out in life that the more transparent and honest you are, everything is better.

00;12;01;23 – 00;12;31;26

There is certainly someone in every audience I speak to that can connect to that. When we try to make our stories so clean and clear and beautiful, I think we leave people feeling inadequate because that isn’t your story and this isn’t totally related. And I’m sorry, but that’s fine. I had an experience on a panel many years ago when I had been recently elevated and I was being asked to give advice and I was with these amazing women from Google and Microsoft.

00;12;31;26 – 00;12;51;17

So I was already feeling a little bit insecure about my role and to hear them tell their stories about like I was born and that six months I decided I was going to be a lawyer. Then I went to Harvard and I and I just sat there the whole time and I was like, wow. I have like stumbled my way through life and still ended up in a pretty great place.

00;12;51;17 – 00;13;14;18

And I had never done it before. But in that moment, for some reason, I decided to just say it and I was like, I am so inspired by both of you and wow, I’m not bad. You know, when I went to the University of Kansas, nobody in their life is really aspiring, but I was a first generation and college attendee and I didn’t have opportunity.

00;13;14;18 – 00;13;31;16

You know, I grew up incredibly impoverished. I grew up without a lot of no one took this path. The kids I went to school with didn’t do this. They went to trade school, you know. So and maybe this ties to sustainability because, by the way, I believe this sort of authenticity is what’s required to make a social. Yeah, yeah.

00;13;31;19 – 00;13;48;24

But I just think you’re better being able to say like this is I’m not great at that. I need help here. I did this and I learned all these things from it. But like I learned from the bottom of the barrel. And I think that there’s a lot of strength that comes from that. The older I get, the more I see that is like real value.

00;13;48;27 – 00;14;28;12

It’s great. Thank you. Like that. It’s all true. Yeah, I know. totally wild part. Let’s get into nicely. Yeah. Okay. Well, obviously. Yeah. I see you doing so much. Yeah. And I see the sustainability team in particular working really, really hard. Yeah. To figure the hard stuff out. Right. What do you say to people who think Nestlé equals bad or some variation of bad when you see how hard people are working to do good?

00;14;28;14 – 00;14;51;22

Yeah, I have a couple of reflections. First, I’m always genuinely humbled when people want to share their opinions about us with me and in in my job writ large, not just for sustainability part, a lot of what I do is listen to that and I try not to be too reactive because I think people’s everyone’s entitled to their point of view.

00;14;51;22 – 00;15;12;19

Sure, I can certainly provide factual basis for my I won’t say arguments, but for my thoughts, for the points that I want to put across the table. But, you know, I think for me, the most important thing that we can do is show up as great humans. And we we operate across the country in a lot of communities.

00;15;12;22 – 00;15;36;09

And like show up and be a great human in your community, show up and be open to feedback and challenge. And I think that’s the only way that you can really walk through these criticisms. Some of them are things we haven’t handled well, to be very honest. Some of them are things that are just factually inaccurate, but it doesn’t really matter if opinions are what they are.

00;15;36;11 – 00;16;02;15

The thing about I’ve worked for Nestlé for nearly 20 years, which is sort of unheard of in I am really not unique. We have employees who stay at the company, much like people did generations ago, you know, more tied decades of commitment to whatever their part of the business is. And there are some really extraordinary people within the company.

00;16;02;15 – 00;16;27;25

And I do feel a responsibility to talk about them sometimes and the work that they do. And it doesn’t change what perception might be about water rights or about it’s okay. I think what we can do is talk about the things that we do to be really open and authentic, especially when there are things we don’t know how to solve and to try to communicate more of the action that’s happening.

00;16;27;28 – 00;16;51;29

I work for the US subsidiary of this company. We are a Swiss company. We were born in Switzerland and it is not well known the Swiss. You know, Switzerland’s a tiny country, but the people are exceptionally humble. And the reason I think it’s important is it actually really informs the way we talk about ourselves. We struggle to talk about things that aren’t fully finished.

00;16;52;02 – 00;17;09;00

So if I’m on a ten year journey, I want to wait until I’ve done all of the things with absolute certainty and I’ve had some auditor come in and double check all of my work and then I want to present a report to you. But of course, that’s not how humans want to hear the stories. That’s not how they want to experience the journey.

00;17;09;02 – 00;17;28;08

But my personal philosophy is the more honest and forthcoming you can be about that, the more you can ask questions and try to take people on a journey with you and learn from their journey that it all comes out in the wash. You know, not everyone will be a fan of the company. That’s okay. It really is okay.

00;17;28;11 – 00;17;49;05

We need to be good actors. We need to feel comfortable with what we’re doing When when things like water rights, you know, get challenged. People are mad at Nestlé, but we’re really mad about the way water rights are given. I don’t take that personally. That’s about the way laws are written. We’re just the face of it. And we haven’t done a good job at defending ourselves because we’re not very defensive.

00;17;49;05 – 00;18;08;07

Yeah, so I don’t I try not to let that stuff distract from the things that we really want to talk about and we really want to build. Sustainability is such a unique space because as I said, we’re, you know, Nestlé’s commitment is to go all the way through our supply chain in scope. Three, we’re an earlier adopter in that space.

00;18;08;07 – 00;18;31;06

Not everybody is taking the same journey. In order to do that, you have to be pretty humble because, my gosh, we’re going to ask people, farmers, to do things that no one else is asking for. Right now or not many of us are asking for. And no matter the size of this company and it’s a large company, we are a very small part of what people actually eat.

00;18;31;06 – 00;18;56;12

We only have so much of the wheat that we’re going to buy. And so our ability to influence is less and it requires us to be pretty humble about it and to seek partnership with others who want to drive in the same direction. So when you think about ingredients like we like chocolate, like coffee, like you name it, you’re probably using a lot of the wrong gradients out there, right?

00;18;56;14 – 00;19;22;26

Yes. So yes and no. We’re very big in some categories. So dairy, little known fact dairy is our largest ingredient. So people certainly know of Nestle. You think about us as a chocolate company, everyone does. We actually don’t sell chocolate in the United States in the bar. For us as a confectionery, we have toll house chocolate chips, but that’s not a very big part of our portfolio.

00;19;22;26 – 00;19;58;21

So when you look at where we have our footprint, dairy, is it first and then we start working down into sort of micro slivers from there. And I think that’s something that’s surprising to a lot of people when you look at how you get buy in from all levels of your organization to rethink. Yeah, to find new ways, to find new sources, to find how you’re going to solve problems that you’ve never had to solve before, let alone ask a farmer.

00;19;58;24 – 00;20;27;28

Yeah. To come in with something that no one else has asked for. To ask your own people for that as well. How do you successfully get buy in from employees? And, and maybe I even start with how do you get buy in from your executive leadership team, your peers? Where does it start? It’s a journey. I you know, for the first two years, I felt like we did a lot more pushing of sustainability than having people ask us for help.

00;20;28;00 – 00;20;45;10

And okay, you know, that was we did a lot of pushing. There were some things we could do. And so just to be very practical about it, yeah, in the early part of the journey, you’re looking for the low hanging fruit. How do we start to hit our 2025 goals in without having to convince a lot of people?

00;20;45;10 – 00;21;14;11

Well, you go to procurement first, you know, you take a look at where you can implement renewable energy. You look at and there were things that we could do that didn’t require us to bring the masses. And as we did a great job at executing those early wins, we started to pick up a little bit of momentum. And our CEO has a saying that I really it resonates with me and it’s momentum is really hard to create, but it’s easy to keep going.

00;21;14;11 – 00;21;33;20

And so you’ve got to sort of grab it while you’ve got it and do a better job with the storytelling and we took our employees on a big journey with us. We started bringing in outside speakers, talking about consumers of the future. This is about relevancy. At the end of the day, we want to be relevant to our consumers for the long run.

00;21;33;28 – 00;21;52;19

We have a lot to be proud of that we always did. We were always thoughtful from a business perspective about making sure that we managed our resources well and that we were, you know, not using too much water in our factories, that we were not doing things that were energy intensive. If there were other options, we always had this habit.

00;21;52;19 – 00;22;13;00

So you’re sort of lifting up the people that were doing that all along. Okay. And then you start talking about and here are the things we don’t know how to do. What else? Supplies, How do we do? How do we pilot something? How do I break off a part of this and try something really innovative? And so for us, one of the first big movers was doing a project around dairy.

00;22;13;00 – 00;22;31;13

I said, it’s the biggest part of our footprint, and it was making a commitment that we would work with ten farms. So it’s not a huge sort of group that you’ve got to deal with. And we would look at farm management practices that would make their businesses net zero and dairy, and we invested in them, we co invested on it.

00;22;31;13 – 00;22;51;23

So you’re not making them do it. It’s their business and we have to respect they are business people like we are business people. And so how do you come together in this supply shed that wholly is within our I don’t want to say control because it’s not they offer their milk to other people, but it is it’s a known population and how do you work with them?

00;22;51;23 – 00;23;12;03

And then you measure when you implement these practices, this is what happens. You don’t lose milk output from your dairy. You were able to bring down your energy intensity. You were able to regenerate your soil in the process. And as we start getting those learnings and pulling those out, how do we talk about those? And start to find other pockets where we can do this?

00;23;12;05 – 00;23;31;23

You can’t just go in and say this is our, you know, command, Right? Right. Yeah. You really have to work with your supply chain and the other people that are involved to make them come along with you. And the same is true with employees. That’s really interesting. So knowing that there’s a market, right, There’s a market for what they’re already producing.

00;23;31;23 – 00;23;57;06

Yes. So there’s no incentive for them to just magically create in a new way or produce in a new way. So you’re there partnering with them. When you think about employees as you move forward, what do you think partnership looks like for them? Because they have to both do their job and change their job for the future. How what what do you think that’s going to look like or have you already solved that match?

00;23;57;07 – 00;24;20;02

I would say we’ve solved it, but I think that it’s thrilling because what we found is as we started to get momentum, we have a lot of employees that are quite interested in sustainability. For whatever reason. They’ve got teenage kids. You talk about it all the time. They are personally interested. They they’re worried about drought. You know, whatever their personal motivations are, they see a better way to do business.

00;24;20;02 – 00;24;44;25

If you just want to look at it through the business lens. What we started to do was involve employee populations, whether it was bringing in outside speakers to talk about things, giving employees the opportunity to interact. One of my personal favorites is we have a system within our company, internal to the company that we put these questions up, their business questions that employees give feedback on, and it gets competitive.

00;24;44;25 – 00;25;07;11

Your your answers can win. And we’ve been doing sustainability challenges in getting these really great ideas, you know, in the factory about here is something we could do if we if we looked at a temperature adjustment in our refrigeration by one degree, we don’t believe that we lose anything in product quality and you can save money and it’s better for the environment.

00;25;07;11 – 00;25;34;28

And so you start looking for small things. And then there are some really groundbreaking big things that happen along the way. We have work to do. Storytelling internally to make sure that employees see that everybody has a part in this journey. And it really is everybody’s job. It is not wholly in addition to okay, it can feel that way from time to time, but it is this is open space.

00;25;34;28 – 00;25;52;29

You know, this is we are pioneering. That’s definitely the language that I use. And so help us on this journey. When you see something, give us your ideas. If you think that there’s a better way that we can look at our packaging or you’ve got come at it because we we need all of that and let’s experiment together.

00;25;53;04 – 00;26;12;02

Maybe the final part to this that I think is super important is when something isn’t working, be honest about it and say like, This isn’t working on our journey. Let’s, you know, time out, stop. We’ve got to figure out how to pivot quickly because we don’t have a lot of time. Right? You know, we’ve got hard goals that we have to meet and we have a responsibility to meet them.

00;26;12;04 – 00;26;51;08

And your CEO, your global CEO, has been very out front on what the company will do. Yes. So it’s not an option. It’s not an option. And maybe that helps with employee engagement. Probably. Probably at least leader engagement for sure. Right. Right. There’s some really interesting pushback on ESG right now. Yeah, I think you have found an interesting way to make sure that it doesn’t feel extra or in addition to can you talk about how you’ve prioritized that within your business approach, how you’ve gone after those goals in a way that is not nice but an imperative?

00;26;51;15 – 00;27;10;19

Yeah, you know, we’re really focused on making sure that whatever we do is a part of our business. It’s not an add on. This is not sustainability isn’t like a plus up. It is a part of the way we do business and we have to be dogmatic about that point or it does start to feel like this is a nice to do.

00;27;10;19 – 00;27;40;05

That could be, you know, cut in a different budget for sure. I will say I’m not sure that this is we’re doing it particularly well or that anyone is doing it particularly well. Today. We are looking for insights for from our consumers about what they want. And in food, I think it’s not as clear yet as it is maybe in apparel or other places in other sectors where I think auto, you know, that there are some things that are sort of clear decisions.

00;27;40;05 – 00;27;58;10

You’re going to buy an EV vehicle or you’re going to buy a conventional fuel vehicle in food. It’s a little bit different. You know, do I want my DiGiorno pizza with regenerative wheat or am I looking for just a pizza that I need to put on the table tonight? Right. And so we’re experimenting with the the things that we’re talking about.

00;27;58;10 – 00;28;18;04

We’re experimenting with the insights that we have. I don’t know that we have a full bead on what our consumers want. What we do know is looking at the consumers of the future, this is all more meaningful. Okay? And when we think about sustainability, we have to think about sustainability from a business perspective to how are we sustainable?

00;28;18;04 – 00;28;39;03

We are 156 or 57 years old. How do we get to be 200 years old? How do we get to be It’s it’s in all of the practices. And so how do we make sure that those things don’t have daylight between them? This has been so good. Thank you so much for this. You are pretty far out nestles pretty far out in the goals that you’re going after.

00;28;39;06 – 00;29;00;09

And I understand that they’re harder and harder. Right? They’re they’re the ones that you haven’t solved yet. The big questions that you’re facing that you get to answer for people who are earlier in their journey and for companies that are figuring out how they do it because a study says they’re not. Everybody’s an expert. Not everybody is deep in their journey.

00;29;00;09 – 00;29;22;13

We have a lot of companies really starting. You talked about failures earlier and learning from failures, but also some successes. What would you say to yourself if you were just starting the journey here at Nestlé in terms of sustainability? Yeah, I think the most important thing, whether it’s for myself or others, is not to have too much hubris here.

00;29;22;17 – 00;29;40;16

Okay? This is new space for everybody. And when I started adopting the pioneering language for myself, it really helped, you know, to say like, yeah, I don’t. We don’t have this figured out. I have a lot of smart people that work here, and we don’t know how to solve this last 3% of virgin plastic reduction. In a way, it’s really hard.

00;29;40;17 – 00;30;05;14

Yeah. How do you figure out how to do it in some of these categories where you’re trying to protect a food product and, you know, limit your impact on the environment? And the most success that I have personally found in I have to believe this is true for others who are joining the journey is to be honest about those things and look for others like seek others.

00;30;05;14 – 00;30;30;07

This is not a competitive environment. We are all, yeah, businesses and competition in some way. But like not here. You know, for me the future is how do I partner with you and you and you to go faster because we have critical issues we’re trying to solve and whether you want to talk about it in scientific terms or you want to talk about it in sort of weather stress or whatever it is, it doesn’t matter.

00;30;30;07 – 00;30;57;22

We are all under challenge and we have to partner together to make it work. So it’s not a competitive environment. And as soon as we can start looking at like we don’t have great definitions for what this practice is, but can we agree on 70% of it and just start moving together? So, you know, I think sort of adopting this good enough and we’ll evolve as more information becomes available as new technologies come online.

00;30;57;24 – 00;31;22;00

When I start looking at our our longer range goals, I mean, boy, am I hoping that more people want to join and that there’s technology that’s turning online like soon because I don’t know, I don’t have a roadmap to achieve in perfect order my 2030 goals yet. But in a business environment, if you believe what I said earlier, which is everything we do in sustainability is built into our business practices.

00;31;22;02 – 00;31;40;06

But you got to solve that pretty fast because your business plans are being written. And so what do we do to create the right sort of community? And it should be a community where we are working on this stuff together. Molly Fogarty, Nestlé’s own North America, thank you so much. What a pleasure. Thank you for having me. Absolutely.

00;31;40;06 – 00;31;50;23

An absolute joy.

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Chris Thornton is a Senior Principal and member of the global leadership team at Daggerwing Group. In his role, Chris serves as a source of strategic counsel for Senior Executives with client firms, advising them on how to help clients achieve Executive alignment, transform their cultures and equip and enable people managers to lead and embed change. An expert in the people side of change with both client-side and consulting experience, Chris has worked with leading companies including Nestlé, Pfizer, and GE Aviation to do change right and make it stick. He is also an active speaker on business transformation, a driver of innovation in Daggerwing’s breadth of change consulting services, and the host of Daggerwing Group’s podcast, Change@Work. Chris and his wife were featured in the New York Times for their love of pie.