Headland has announced a collaboration with Sue Garrard, former Unilever sustainability chief, to create a combined sustainability consultancy and communications offer for large organisations seeking to develop and communicate commercially-aligned sustainability strategies.

Sue joins as an Associate and will add to Headland’s sustainability communications expertise built up through its work with multiple clients across key sectors in sustainability, including energy transition, food and drink, waste management, fashion and sustainable development.

Since departing Unilever in September 2018, Sue has established herself as one of the world’s leading expert practitioners in developing sustainability strategies in major companies and aligning them with business objectives.

Whilst at Unilever, Sue was part of the executive team and led the work to embed the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan to support growth, build brands with purpose, build employee engagement and future-proof the business. By the end of 2017, over 25 of its brands were Purpose-led, growing 50% faster than its other brands and representing 70% of the company’s growth.

Chris Salt, Headland CEO, said, “Sue is an outstanding advocate in this area, and we see great potential in our collaboration. Sustainability issues are going to become more important to businesses through investor pressure, consumer attitudes, regulator action, competitive advantage or moral imperative. It is the one area where management consultancy and communication really need to work together if organisations want to achieve change. Communicating sustainability strategies has historically been very difficult for any organisation to get right”.

Sue Garrard said, “Headland has an excellent reputation and are the only comms agency I’ll be formally collaborating with. Business is waking up quickly to the reality that they need to be part of creating a more sustainable world, but the gap between intent and action amongst corporate leaders is large. Companies need help to understand how sustainability can strengthen their long-term business success. And their sustainability strategy needs to be set out so all its stakeholders understand how it will make the organisation future fit, and how that will be achieved. Communication lies at the heart of all this.”

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