legal sustain

legal sustain

Legalization of The Powers of Traditional Authorities As Environmental Supervisors

Posted on January 4, 2019 in Uncategorized

The traditional authorities are reckoned as landowners and the rightful heirs to the seat of the past forebears. Owing to their ordained position, they are charged with the heinous responsibility of ensuring the conservation and the sustainable use of the resources in the environment. Aside from this, they are to maintain the buoyancy, sereneness, and cleanliness of the environment. It is believed among some cultures that poor sanitary environs in some societies result in untold mayhem from the incensed ancestors who are strong advocates of cleanliness and maintenance of the environment and its resources. Thus, following their footsteps, the traditional authorities are supposed to ensure that the resources in their societies are properly managed and taken proper care.

In times past, the traditional authorities acted as environmental inspectors. They supervised environmentally friendly activities. They spearheaded events and programs that ensured the maintenance of the environment. As it is still potent in some societies in the world, traditional authorities have instituted environmental cleaning and sanitation events sometimes weekly or monthly in their societies. During the agreed day or days, members in the society aid in the de-silting of choked gutters, removal of debris, clearing of pathways to water bodies, helping in the repair of old and weak architectural structures and so forth in their communities. Pathways and the streets are swept and freed of any rubbish or environmentally hazardous debris. This greatly improves the health conditions of the members of the society.

In ensuring that members of their society listened ardently to their call for environmental sanity and the sustainable use of its resources, the traditional authorities established some strict monitoring and sanctioning measures. Culprits of environmental malfeasance were punished either by paying monetary fines and/or performance of pacification rites to appease the angered ancestors. Other defaulters were publicly mocked during societal gatherings. All these stringent measures helped in maintaining environmental sanity and the conservation as well as the sustainable use of the resources in the environment. Society members greatly respected the authority of the traditional council and this brought peace and good health to the people.

However, the situation is somehow different in some societies today. Due to the weakening of the powers of the traditional council, their former roles as environmental supervisors are threatened. There is, therefore, the need for the various governments to streamline and legalize the authority of the traditional councils in communities for them to assume their roles as environmental inspectors. This is very keen to achieving a healthy environment.

As landowners and residents close to the biodiversity resources in their communities, the government must charge them with the responsibility to care for their environment at the grass root level. This would augment the efforts of the formal institutions in charge of the environment such as the Forestry and Wildlife commission, the Environmental Protection Agency and the water and sanitation departments. The legalization of the powers of traditional authorities as environmental supervisors will deepen their resolve to protect the environment and its resources. Also, it will aid them in promulgating their traditionally effective sanctions to especially elite culprits of environmental degradation who disarm the authority of the traditional council because of the non-legalization of their powers as environmental supervisors by the law of the land.

However, the powers of the traditional authorities when legalized must be monitored by an external committee, such as the forestry and wildlife commission or a new and neutral committee. This is important because some traditional authorities who are not glued to the cultural values and heritage of their ancestors may abuse their powers as environmental inspectors and resort to bribery and corruption. Thus, to arrest this potential problem, the legalization of their powers must not go unchecked but strictly managed to regulate their duties.

It is an undeniable fact that the powers of the traditional authorities in various communities can be harnessed for society and national development, especially in the area of environmental sanitation and sustainable management of its resources which is in a sorry state in numerous societies of the world. Of course, a legalization of the powers of the traditional authorities would aid in censoring the environmentally degrading activities while ensuring a green, healthy environment.

What Does Sustainability in Business Really Mean?

Posted on January 3, 2019 in Uncategorized

The term “sustainable” is used with growing frequency in the mission statements of large companies. CEO’s and politicians make nearly inflationary use of the term. My impression is this: Sustainability is becoming a platitude.

Sustainability in large companies

For example, the Internet pages of an internationally active machine-tool conglomerate reads as follows:

“Our own understanding of sustainable operations:

… A world-wide uniform environmental policy is the foundation for our successful environmental management…
… Our employees are committed to complying with environmental statutes and internally established standards…”

What does this actually really mean? The company is committed to complying with environmental statutes. Period. Nothing more, nothing less. But clearly, this is not the idea. Sustainable operations and sustainable leadership entails a good bit more than complying with the law.

What is sustainability?

Sustainability means to meet the needs of the present without risking the possibility of not being able to meet the needs of tomorrow.

For humanity this means: We must conduct ourselves in such a way that our children and grand-children can also lead a good life on this planet. Citizens and politicians must establish the legal framework in such a way that this is possible. – Companies are then expected to comply with these rules and regulations.

But:

A company is a long ways from operating sustainably only because it adheres to rules and regulations! A company practices sustainability if it does not compromise its own future with the needs of the present.”

Short-term vs. long-term orientation

First, let’s take a look at what the above definition means to a company. According to this definition, a CEO is not working in a sustainable manner if he is only focused on the next quarterly results. If so, he would most likely partially compromise the future development of the company.

He would be operating in a sustainable manner if he is focused on quarterly results only to the extent that is necessary to ensure the company’s survival.

Do CEO’s of publicly traded companies act in a sustainable manner?

Rather not. Ultimately, the opinions of investors matter most. If the shareholders expect high profits for the next quarter because they want to sell their holdings, the CEO will focus on the highest possible quarterly results – and not on the sustainable development of the company. Ultimately, he wants to keep his job.

As a dependent employee, he places his own interests ahead of the company’s. Sustainable operations? Not so!

What happens in owner operated businesses?

Do entrepreneurs act in a sustainable manner? It depends. The key to this is the entrepreneur’s vision. What does he want to achieve? What purpose is he pursuing with the company?

If his primary motivation is to make money with the company, it will be difficult to operate in a sustainable manner. The focus will keep returning to the money.

He might treat his employees well, and he might also get involved with customer needs, and even become socially engaged, as long as things are going well. But the focus is clear when trouble arises:

“I need to make money.”

All other considerations are secondary to this.

Entrepreneurs with vision

But if the entrepreneur has a true vision, and he is pursuing the implementation of a dream with his company, then the likelihood is high that he will operate in a sustainable manner.

He is ultimately pursuing an objective that is larger than himself and the need to satisfy his ego. The right attitude is needed to operate in a truly sustainable manner:

“My work and this company are directed at accomplishing something of value for the world.”

As an aside, this does not mean that the entrepreneur is not permitted to make good money. To the contrary. In order to attain the purpose of the company, i.e. to achieve something of value for the world, he should and must make enough money to be satisfied and content.

Only then can he work on attaining the purpose. And if it important to him to live in a beautiful home and drive a Porsche, then this is OK. The luxury then becomes the means to an end.

Sustainable leadership

I believe that an entrepreneur will find it easiest to lead in a sustainable manner if he has a true vision, lives by it, and rigorously aligns his company accordingly.

This creates the highest likelihood that he will make decisions that are driven by sustainability even in critical situations. Ultimately, the point is to strive for long-term success with his dream and the company.

An employed manager, whether as department head or CEO, has much more difficulty to lead and operate in a sustainable manner. When push comes to shove and investors apply pressure, the best intended sustainable vision will quickly get brushed aside. Investors call the shots – and their “vision” is usually monetary in nature and not sustainable.

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Sustainability, Operations and Supply Chain Management in Manufacturing and Service Industries

Posted on January 2, 2019 in Uncategorized

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