Customer-oriented firms are environment leaders: global report

Firms need to integrate environmental issues into their strategic marketing and environmental management practices into their operations

Customer-oriented firms that value environmental management practices and adopt them as part of their strategic marketing are fast becoming known as environmental leaders, according to a global research report.

The new study from Hubert Gatignon, an emeritus professor of marketing, and the Claude Janssen chaired professor of business administration and emeritus at INSEAD, found the extent of a firm’s environmental management practices depends on how customer oriented it is.

“It’s clear from this research that customer satisfaction is an important driver of the implementation of environmental management practices. Firms need to integrate environmental issues into their strategic marketing and environmental management practices into their operations,” Gatignon said.

The report, Customer orientation and organisational innovation: The case of environmental management practices, shows customer-oriented firms gather more critical market information, recognise new customer opportunities and satisfy customers by delivering the demanded products or services.

“Customer orientation not only contributes to the firm’s environmental performance but also the development of long-term relationships and a firm’s capacity to innovate,” Gatignon said.

In a large-scale survey of 4324 French companies with 10 or more employees, Gatignon measured customer orientation by examining the company’s commitment to quality standards, such as ISO9000, whether the firms had information-gathering systems in place to capture customer data and translate it into action and the firm's’ commitment to after-sale service.

In his paper, Gatignon found the higher the firms scored on these dimensions, the higher the likelihood that they adopted environmental management practices, such as procedures to identify and measure environmental impacts by preparing environmental audits, setting environmental performance goals and obtaining ISO14001 environmental certification.

Whether firms were responsive to customers or not did not have a significant impact on their environmental management practices. According to Gatignon, a focus on only resolving current customer claims makes firms miss the needs of new customers, making them less innovative. The dimensions that mattered most were the firm’s values and its information-gathering capabilities, the report noted.

The firms surveyed spanned several sectors, such as food, consumer goods, cars and equipment and transport. Construction and intermediate goods and energy were most sensitive to the adoption of environmental management practices.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia, or check us out on Google+:google.com/+CmoAu

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Blog Posts

Cannes Part 2: How Adidas is maximising digital while articulating culture

“Retail is not dead”. This was the bold statement made by, Michael Treff, president of Adidas’ digital creative agency, Code and Theory, at this year’s Cannes Lion festival of creativity.

Nickie Scriven

CEO, Zenith

Cannes Part 1: Why brands must put human interactions at the heart of their business

As a Media Juror at this year’s Cannes Lions, I was fortunate enough to attend the world’s most influential festival of creativity and listen to thought-leading marketers from around the globe.

Nickie Scriven

CEO, Zenith

4 creative skills that will be useful forever

In recent times, the clarion call from futurists, economists, marketers, educators and leaders the world over is one of slight panic, “The world is changing and you’re not ready for it!” And of course, they make a very good point.

Kieran Flanagan and Dan Gregory

Speakers, trainers, co-authors

Being an investor who has an understanding of the finance industry, I would question the validity of this article, judging by the impairm...

Rowan

How a customer-led digital transformation has helped this CMO generate $6m in incremental business

Read more

An interesting update considering that today is the easiest way it has ever been to measure contribution to the business as well as the h...

Frederic

State of the CMO 2019: Tenure shortens, pressure is on as marketers strive to demonstrate impact

Read more

I thought this was what Salesforce Audience Studio (formerly Salesforce DMP) was supposed to do. How are a CDP and a DMP different? I'm c...

Tony Ahn

Salesforce announces customer data platform

Read more

Well written Vanessa!! Agreed with your view that human experience is marketing's next frontier. Those businesses who are focused on the ...

Clyde Griffith

Forget customer experience, human experience is marketing's next frontier

Read more

Great tips for tops skills need to develop and stay competitive

Nick

The top skills needed to stay competitive in a rapidly changing workforce

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in