During the last decade, the sustainability position in multinational corporations has grown in influence. Much literature has explored how corporations can play an important role in solving the environmental challenges facing the planet. However, until now, there has been little research on sustainability leadership at the individual level. In this book, Schein explores the deeper psychological motivations of sustainability leaders. He shows how these motivations relate to overall effectiveness and capacity to lead transformational change and he explores the ways in which the complexity of sustainability is driving new approaches to leadership.Drawing on interviews with 75 leaders in more than 40 multinational organizations, NGOs, and academia, Schein explores how ecological worldviews and conscious mindsets are developed and expressed in the context of global sustainability practice. By empirically grounding key theories from developmental psychology in sustainability leadership practice, the author encourages us to think about leadership in a different way."A New Psychology for Sustainability Leadership" will be of interest to an interdisciplinary audience of social scientists, educators, corporate executives, and social entrepreneurs. The insights from this book can be usefully integrated into leadership curriculum and development programs to help the next generation of sustainability leaders respond to global challenges.
“By offering a fascinating new perspective about psychology, this book opens an entirely new type of conversation about sustainability. It should be required reading for corporate executives, management educators, and business students everywhere.”
Joel Makower, Chairman and Executive Editor, GreenBiz Group
“Steve Schein has provided a great service to sustainability management with this work. He has considered the psychological drivers – the why – and the leadership capacities – the how – that drive sustainability leaders. As a Collaborator-In-Chief myself, I found Schein’s analysis enlightening. I highly recommend this very readable book.”
Chris Librie, Senior Director, Living Progress – Hewlett Packard
“I have read hundreds of books on sustainability and written one. But this book is different from anything I have seen. Absolutely unputdownable, full of practical ideas, ancient wisdom, and the latest theories and research: An all-in-one treat for anyone seriously thinking of a making a difference.
Tojo Thatchenkery, Ph.D., George Mason University
Co-author, Appreciative Intelligence
“Until this book, no one has explored the psyche that motivates corporate leaders to protect people and the planet. Understanding these motives may very well be the key to unlocking a sustainable future for us all.”
Tim Mohin, Director of Corporate Responsibility for Advanced Micro Devices. Author, Changing Business from the Inside Out
"In this deeply thoughtful book, Schein illuminates our many 'ways of thinking' about sustainability… Marrying insights from psychology with the thoughts and experiences of corporate sustainability leaders, Schein not only helps us identify the journey that is required of us all, he provides the roadmap for our travels."
Mary C. Gentile, PhD, Babson College, formerly Harvard Business School
Author, Giving Voice to Values
"Schein’s book fills a vital gap in the change-makers’ toolkit. With a mix of personal narrative, theoretical insights and fresh research, he helps us better understand what drives sustainability leaders—and what we need to do to turn the trickle of change into a flood."
Dr Wayne Visser, University of Cambridge, author, Sustainable Frontiers
Helping people and organizations understand their relationship
to nature is critical to creating the lasting change and sustainable future we all want. Schein explores the important psychological connection people have to nature in hopes of sparking new conversations and research around corporate sustainability leadership.
Josh Henretig, Senior Director Energy, Environment and Cities,
"In this refreshingly readable book, Steve Schein develops the basis for a psychology of successful sustainability leadership by engaging us with his own story of growing awareness of his direct interdependence with the environment, as well as with stories of the 75 corporate executives he interviewed.”
Bill Torbert, PhD
Author, Action Inquiry: The Secret of Timely and Transforming Leadership
"Much has been written and said recently about the importance of sustainability, but Schein's book is particularly valuable. He identifies specific attributes of how effective leaders think, and what they are doing to make a difference. If you're looking for insights about how to move from good intentions about sustainability to effective action, this book offers real insights."
Dr. Keith Melville, The Kettering Foundation
This book is one of the first to look at the personal motivation of sustainability professionals. It examines what Schein calls their ecological worldview, which Senge and others have referred to as the mental models that shape the way people think and act. Schein’s interviews with executives help to uncover a pattern in the evolution of thinking that may be critical if business is to produce meaningful sustainability outcomes.
Dr Chris Laszlo, Weatherhead School of Management at Case
Western Reserve University; co-author, Embedded Sustainability
“Schein’s analysis of the role of worldviews is intuitively sound and left me nodding in agreement. He deftly links psychological development and life changing experiences with corporate leaders’ role in the earth’s ecology. What I find even more enthralling is that Schein writes as if he was sitting by a campfire, telling a story. An enlightening book that I highly recommend.”
Richmond S. Fourmy, PsyD , Associate Partner, Aon Hewitt
"Interesting... I don t know of any other title that explores the inner motivations of sustainability leaders."--Tim Mohin, Author of 'Changing Business from the Inside Out' and Director of Corporate Responsibility"