Going green. Do you really know how to reduce the risks associated with your energy transformation?

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Are you considering taking your Energy, Utilities or Resources business green? It might seem like a daunting task with potential risks and costs. But don't worry - Building Change Capabilities for your business makes the transition easier and downsizes pitfalls! In this article, we will explore strategies that help you reach your net zero goals whilst reducing the risks associated with business change. 

As the world moves towards a greener and more sustainable future, Energy, Utilities and Resources businesses have been tasked with leading the way. It is no longer enough to simply talk about ‘green’ in operations; steps must be taken to reduce emissions, increase efficiency and ensure sustainability for the business over time.

However, the energy transition comes with its challenges:

  • Identifying and leveraging the correct primary sponsor and sponsorship cascade, 
  • Building change capabilities at senior and middle management levels to reduce risks and costs,
  • And aligning the transformation with business DNA so that employees can truly feel connected to the overall vision. 

The DNA of your business is made up of your mission, values, strategy, objectives and language. Your future state needs to be aligned with all of these for a successful transformation.  

That is why we've created the Value-Driven Change Leader Program. The program helps executives and CEOs of Energy, Utilities and Resources businesses understand the driving force behind their transition and develop the skills needed to successfully sponsor the change.

Factoring in the Risks and Costs of Going Green: Avoiding Failure Before Taking the Leap

The risks and costs of change vary depending on the scale of transformation.  Most often the climate actions threaten businesses with: 

  • financial losses, 
  • operational inefficiencies, 
  • resource constraints, 
  • and employee turnover. 

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Making a significant shift to climate neutral ways of working can jeopardize the operation of even the largest organisations. Hazards may include not having a clear transformation goal or understanding of the financial, operational and human resources implications. Uncertainty and complexity often lead to costly mistakes that are difficult to reverse. For example, an organisation may have neglected to understand the efforts associated with switching their processes to renewable energy sources or underestimated the costs of retraining staff in sustainable business practices. 

To mitigate the risks and ensure a successful transition of your business practices you must align the change with your overall business strategy. Make sure to have a clear vision for the future of your business and communicate it to all employees in an engaging way. A well-crafted change management plan and communications strategy ensure that all stakeholders are on board and you can track progress and correct course throughout the transition process. Change capabilities and adaptability tools are the keys to measuring the energy transition success. 

Leader taking a leap to going green.

You want to be known as the executive sponsor who led the most successful business transformation, but you're not sure where to start.

Business transformations are hard. They take a lot of time, effort, and money. Not to mention the fact that they can often lead to negative impacts on employees and the organisation if not executed correctly. After our change sponsor training, you'll feel confident in your decisions and actions and be able to mitigate the risk and costs associated with change.

Understanding the Driving Force Behind Your Transition

We identified three major driving forces behind your transition. As Energy, Utilities and Resources businesses strive for sustainability, it is essential to identify the most appropriate primary sponsor to drive change across your organisation. To ensure success in transitioning from conventional energy sources to more sustainable methods, developing change capabilities at all levels of your organisation is crucial. Additionally, an effective transformation must align with your business DNA - its mission, values, strategy, objectives and language. 


The best way to enable these drivers is to coach and leverage your primary sponsor, enrol support from senior management and provide adequate training and resources to all employees. An effective change management strategy should also be in place to ensure that the transition is smooth and successful. Moreover, communicating regularly and clearly with staff members before and throughout the process is essential to ensure alignment with your vision. 


Implement these strategies correctly and consistently and they will help reduce the risks and costs associated with your business change whilst propelling you towards a greener future. 

How North West Energy tackled their Net Zero goal

A great example of a successful transition to green energy is North West Energy (name changed). Through its Greenhouse Gas Program, North West Energy has set ambitious targets to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions and become a leader in new low-carbon technologies.   


Holly was a program manager at North West Energy, the leading energy company in the Pacific Northwest region. She had been with the company since its inception and had earned respect from colleagues and superiors over the years, working tirelessly on various projects. 

Sam giving an advise to a leader for a successful transformation.

The challenge came in getting everyone on board with the initiative. Although many employees supported the concept, some were wary of the change and resistant to Holly's efforts. To make matters worse, it seemed like every step forward was met with two steps back due to logistical issues or unforeseen setbacks. 

Holly worked hard to ensure that everyone had a voice whilst focussing on the Net Zero goal. She applied change management processes and effective communication strategies that provide employees with information about the transition and helped them understand their roles. 

Holly worked tirelessly to engage and persuade influential personnel of the firm, from senior management teams to middle-level managers. Inevitably, through her devotion and dedication, she achieved aligning everyone with the Net Zero initiative of the company. 

Today, NW Energy is leading the way in sustainable energy sources and Holly's hard work is an inspiration to the industry. She proved that no matter how risky business change may seem, it can be accomplished with the right capabilities, templates and tools.

You want to be known as the executive sponsor who led the most successful business transformation, but you're not sure where to start.

Business transformations are hard. They take a lot of time, effort, and money. Not to mention the fact that they can often lead to negative impacts on employees and the organisation if not executed correctly. After our change sponsor training, you'll feel confident in your decisions and actions and be able to mitigate the risk and costs associated with change.


Preparing your Organisation for Change

Making sure that your organisation is prepared for a successful transition requires planning and preparation. The first step is identifying the people, processes and technology needed to support your change management strategy. Once you have pinned down these components, create templates or guidelines for how each will be implemented during the transition process. This includes developing a detailed roadmap of tasks and timelines, as well as outlining expectations and measuring progress along the way 


Additionally, it is crucial to ensure that employees understand their roles throughout the transition process and are adequately trained on any new processes or technologies they may need to use. 


Providing training and support before the transition will help employees transition and support the change. Empowering leaders with the right change capabilities creates an atmosphere of collaboration where everyone is heard and valued. By involving employees in the transition process, changes are 25% more likely to succeed and 60% faster adopted. 

Regular check-ins with staff will help keep them engaged and informed, while also providing you with valuable feedback about anticipated risk and resistance. 

From Risky Proposition to Sustainable Success: How Holly of NW Energy Made a Seamless Business Transition

When it comes to making a successful business transition, Holly of NW Energy knows how to make it happen. With her strategic roadmap, employee involvement and progress monitoring techniques, she was able to turn the Net Zero initiative from a risky proposition into a sustainable success. 


Here are 5 lessons learned from Holly: 

Holly during ride to work day as a step to going green.
  • 1 Creating a blueprint of what good and bad look like: Holly created a practical reference guide that showed how to change your working habits to reach common future goals.
  • 2 Walking the talk: Holly established guidelines and expectations to ensure that everyone was on the same page when it came to their roles in the transition process.
  • 3 Train and support staff: To successfully transition, each employee needed to be trained and supported throughout the process. Holly made sure that everyone had adequate training and resources to help them succeed.
  • 4 Involve employees: Holly encouraged collaboration and involvement from her teams, empowering them to take ownership of the change process.
  • 5 Providing feedback on the progress: Regular check-ins were essential to ensure that everyone was on track and any potential issues could be addressed quickly.

In conclusion, transitioning to a new business model or initiative can seem daunting. However, Holly from NW Energy proves that it doesn’t have to be a risky endeavour - with the right training, support and preparation, success is achievable. By following her example and implementing the key components outlined above - creating a blueprint, setting an example, providing training and support, involving employees in the process, and providing feedback along the way - you can ensure a smooth transition that is sure to set your organisation up for success. 

Happy Change! 


Sam is one of the authors of The 6 Cents of Change. He's a father, a CEO, an Engineer, a trainer and a problem-solver. His work impacted Apache, Santos, MMA, and more. In his other life, he loves CrossFit and cricket. 

To learn more about us and the solutions we provide, subscribe to The 6 Cents of Change, follow us on LinkedIn or connect with us here info@approach-services.com or +61 (08) 610 20 343.

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