Turning ESG aspirations into results: The role of functional leaders
by: Raj Luthra, Fernando Salas, Abhiskek Shirali, Edward Woodcock
November 29, 2022
Companies face two crucial questions as they increase their focus on environmental, social, and governance (ESG) objectives. What sort of commitment will it take from executives to meet these new demands—and who should take the lead?
To understand the impact of ESG activity on corporate leaders’ jobs, McKinsey’s Corporate and Business Functions service line recently surveyed more than 300 CXOs who lead departments such as finance, HR, legal, IT, procurement, and real estate. Covering a wide range of industries and geographies, the survey asked respondents how their roles have evolved over the past couple of years.
The answers show that while corporate leaders are spending a significant and increasing amount of time on ESG, the types of issues demanding their attention tend not to fall into well-defined categories. That lack of clarity leaves executives struggling to articulate their companies’ ESG positions, and may hamper organizations’ ability to show progress on their ESG priorities.