Archive for Sustainability

RIT Alum Heads Effort to get her B-Corp Named to ‘Best for the Environment’ List

Ann Sherman, a RIT alum who took the sustainable management concentration at the Saunders College of Business, recently forwarded me this great news!  Ann is Staach’s Director of Sustainability and spearheaded the effort.  Great news Ann!


Staach Named to ‘Best for the Environment’ List

Staach is among 84 Businesses recognized for their commitment to addressing environmental challenges.

April 22, 2014: Rochester NY

The nonprofit B Lab has released their third annual ‘B Corp Best for the Environment’ list and Rochester, NY based furniture manufacturer Staach Inc was recognized for creating the most positive environmental impact. The list honors 84 businesses with an environmental impact score in the top 10% of all Certified B Corporations. Scores are determined using the B Impact Assessment, a rigorous and comprehensive evaluation of a company’s influence on its workers, community, and the environment. Honorees include micro, small, and mid-sized businesses.

Other businesses recognized include outdoor retailers Patagonia and GoLite, home and personal care companies Method and Seventh Generation, employee-owned craft brewery New Belgium Brewery and the 20 year old waste reduction and management company, WasteZero.

“Our environmental practices are the foundation of our business and it’s wonderful to be recognized for our ongoing efforts to operate in a responsible manner. We are grateful to our customers who have recognized the value in our products, and our network of partners who have contributed to our success. We hope that this acknowledgment inspires others to engage in the conversation and leads to more support as we assist one another in reducing our impacts.”  -Anne Sherman, Staach Director of Sustainability

Founded in 2006 with a commitment to sustainable processes and local sourcing, Staach utilizes a team of passionate designers and craftspeople to create inspiring contemporary furnishings and environments. All of their products are FSC Certified and made with water-based finishes, using energy efficient methods and regional materials.

Staach maintains a strong commitment to customer service and collaboration between and services a range of clients, from local residences to International restaurant chains. Through their efforts, Staach aims to become industry leaders while generating pride for Made in the USA, supporting the local community, and creating meaningful experiences for our customers and partners.

B Lab is a nonprofit organization that serves a global movement to redefine success in business so that all companies compete not only to be the best in the world, but the best for the world.

By building a community of Certified B Corporations, they aim to make it easier for all of us to tell the difference between “good companies” and good marketing. For more information, visit

Business Skills for a Changing World

The World Environment Center and Net Impact partnered in order to assess what global companies need from business schools and business students alike. In the report it is proposed that companies’ ability to demonstrate resilience and adaptability to marketplace and societal changes has become a strategic imperative. These entities recognize sustainability as a major source of value creation for the preparation of future business leaders. The opinions of senior executives from 33 different companies across several industries were sought, and these were some of the findings:

  • Business school students need to develop skills that focus their attention both inside the company, towards daily operations and core competencies,and outside the company, towards the wider ramifications of business decisions
  • There are skills that traverse inside-outside boundaries (systems thinking, improved interpersonal skills; and negotiation skills)
  • Sustainability is not a stand-alone function within the corporation, nor should it be an isolated part of the business school curriculum.
  • etc.

For more information you can download the full report by clicking here

Electronics Recycling

RIT is holding its 11th Annual E-Cycling Day this Thursday March 24 and it needs your support!

Time: Thursday, 3/24. 7:30 AM – 5:00 PM

Drop-off location: The Sentinel, SAU Circle

Cost: RIT equipment – no charge.
Electronics brought from home – no charge.
In response to the NYS Electronic Equipment Recycling and Reuse Act, RIT’s electronics recycling contractor (Maven Technologies) is no longer charging for electronics brought in from home (as of 1/1/2011).

What: Any electronics, including desktops, laptops, monitors, printers, any other peripherals, cables, TVs, home audio,
cell phones, PDAs, land-line phones, scanners, rechargeable batteries, chargers, plotters, VCRs, etc. (Please don’t bring RIT phones, printer cartridges, non-rechargeable batteries, air conditioners, mini fridges)

Information Safety: All computers recycled during this event will have their hard drives punctured, or erased securely (using Department of Defense or HIPAA protocol). Additional information (Provided by RIT’s Information security Office) is found in the post script to this message.

So stop by this Thursday and drop off your old electronics (they’ll be students to help you unload if necessary) Or you can also arrange a pick up by sending an email to:, be sure to include building  and room #, times when you will be at location and what would you like picked up.

New Alumni Story

Visit our “Alumni Stories” page to read about how EMBA alum Cheryl Adas is using her business skills to manage environmental sustainability at Xerox Global Services!

Are MBAs Morally Prepared?

In a recent Financial Times article, Thomas Gladwin and David Berdish (from Ford) reflect on the Aspen Institute’s finding that:

MBA programmes pay little attention to the social dimensions of sustainability. Of the thousands of “stewardship” courses offered at leading schools, the words “poverty” and “human rights” appear in less than 2 per cent of all course descriptions and in only 14 of all course titles – mostly elective courses that reach a fraction of the students.

In my view this is true – even at RIT. Most mentioned of sustainability focus on ecological sustainability only. Sustainability, however, also relates to social and economic health as well. In fact, the underlying concept is that you need to address all three aspects as they support one another.

While it is easier to just focus on ecological sustainability, and there is much to be understood on that one dimension, we need to start using a broader concept and make sure our students understand this broader view.  We will talk about this in “Managing for Environmental Sustainability” (which shows this bias in the title) this spring.