3 ways leaders can use technology to support their company's mission and values

New tools and ways of working can define, support and measure your progress toward sustainable goals. Image: Pixabay

Jennifer Artley
President, Americas, BT Group
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Companies that know and understand their purpose perform better. Study after study shows that having a strong vision and well-defined values leads to improved financial results and a happier workforce.

But how can a company stay aligned with its vision? Business leaders need more than benchmarks and mission statements. They need new tools and ways of working that define, measure and support their success. For modern leaders, harnessing technology lies at the heart of these efforts, regardless of industry.

Here are three ways technology can help support a company’s purpose and values.

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1. Embrace new tools and ways of working

Seeking out new technologies can push a range of mission-driven initiatives forward, especially when it comes to goals like reducing your environmental impact.

To achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2045, BT Group has begun investing in renewable energy sources. It has also started leveraging electric vehicles to hit targets outlined in its recent pledge.

Other industries could consider new ways to improve product and factory efficiencies to prevent waste while using robotics or 3D printing. Technologies such as artificial intelligence could even be applied to tasks such as the predictive maintenance of equipment, saving time and resources.

Lastly, wireless networks, remote collaboration tools, and virtual reality can be instrumental in cutting a company’s carbon footprint. These tools reduce the need for face-to-face meetings and can help lower everyone’s carbon dioxide emissions by as much as 20%.

2. Evaluating your progress

New technologies - such as the Internet of Things - offer a wealth of data that can help companies track their progress toward their goals. For example, Auto/Mate – an IoT-enabled vehicle-monitoring system – collects fuel economy and carbon data and suggests ways drivers and fleet managers can act to improve their environmental impact.

Such innovations, coupled with processes that help companies check in on their progress, can give companies a clear picture of their achievements as well as their opportunities for improvement.

Business leaders need more than benchmarks and mission statements. They need new tools and ways of working.

Jennifer Artley, President, Americas, BT Group

3. Use access to support a larger cause

About half the world’s population doesn’t have access to the internet. Thanks to this technology gap, much of the globe is cut off from the skills and opportunities they need to thrive.

Improving access to technology can bring benefits like mobile banking and financing access to remote areas or give voice to otherwise isolated communities through social media.

Access issues aren’t just an issue for developing countries. In the UK, almost 12 million people lack the digital skills they need for everyday life. BT’s Skills for Tomorrow initiative aims to reach and help reskill 10 million people by 2025, targeting an expansive group that includes teachers, young people, older citizens, small-business owners and families.

A three-year partnership with the British Asian Trust in India widens this program’s impact further, connecting girls to skills and opportunities that support their employability.

Programs like these are vital to ensuring the proliferation of technology doesn’t create a two-tier society. These efforts also support BT’s wider sustainability goals. By skilling new groups for new technologies, more people will be prepared to use the tools that could one day help them reduce their own environmental impact, further supporting a larger mission.

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