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Anchoring and communicating Sustainable Development

Norway's Best is a large provider of tourism experiences in Norway, managing destinations such as Flåm and Myrkdalen. This includes operating the Flåm Railway, hotels, ski resorts, transportation, and various activities.


Workshop in destination Flåm
Norway's best - Workshop in destination Flåm

In 2022, Awake was engaged by Norway's Best to anchor and communicate their sustainable development work. Creating an overview of their sustainability efforts, building a common understanding in the organization, and increasing engagement through internal and external communication. The process was based on Awake's communication tool for sustainable development.


"We have focused on the company's sustainability efforts for a long time. However, it has been challenging to create a common understanding of what sustainability means and which aspects are most important to us—not only for our operations but also in understanding what areas truly engage our employees. We wanted sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR) to be a fundamental part of the company's identity and pride. The collaboration with Awake not only allowed us to achieve this, but also revealed that the passion for and knowledge of sustainable development were much more widespread within the company than we previously thought." says Theres Kiboko, People & Culture at Norway’s Best.


Norway's best
Workshop with 50 participants from Norway's best gathered at Fretheim Hotel in Flåm.

Awake started the process with a strategic workshop with 50 participants from the organization. Both leaders and employees in various roles and fields participated. To maximize the gathering, we used a method where we combined strategic exercises and tasks with inner development.


"The workshop and the process that followed have helped us find our collective voice. It also lead to valuable discussions where we got our viewpoints and focus areas challenged. Awake provided us with the communication tools and arguments we need to promote our causes both internally and externally. This process has resulted in something we collectively believe 100% in." says Theres Kiboko.

Norway's best
Norway's best, Nærøyfjorden - UNESCO World Heritage.

Photo: Credit



Through collaboration with the project group and a comprehensive survey, we identified one heart topic: Protecting Nature, and five focus areas: Diversity, Transportation, Jobs, and Investment. These sustainability areas align closely with Norway’s Best's core business, where they have implemented many initiatives and set ambitious goals. Areas where they have a deep emotional connection and are committed to creating impact.

 

To communicate sustainability in a credible way, transparency is crucial. To make sure that Norway's Best can speak openly about their challenges and learning points, we mapped out the challenges, developed communication and checked for greenwashing. We looked at what is Norway’s Best's responsibility, where they have an impact, and what lies outside their responsibility. This included a set of guidelines to follow, and looking at possible consequences.


"It’s inspiring to see how much Flåm and Myrkdalen mean to the team at Norway’s Best. Their genuine engagement and heartfelt dedication to caring for nature and people are evident in their work. When the commitment is this authentic, effective communication naturally follows," says Marte Alstad Hansen, Creative Director at Awake.

Norway's best
Camilla Elise Berg, CEO at Awake, facilitating the workshop in Flåm.

To anchor and create a common understanding of the sustainability strategy in the organization, we developed an internal presentation that simply explained the process and strategic choices. This helps employees and new colleagues easily understand what Norway’s Best does in terms of sustainability and how it can be communicated. This included a brief explanation of all main areas, challenges, an elevator pitch, and how employees can get involved.

 

Norway’s Best has integrated sustainability as an important part of its business strategy, working with the triple bottom line; People, Planet and Profit. The incredible nature that surrounds them is the main reason for why they exist as an organization, therefore it was evident that their main focus should be on preserving and protecting nature. The driving force behind accelerating their sustainability efforts is the engagement and commitment of the people. Norway's Best prioritizes taking good care of employees, the local community, and visitors. Together, they aim to enhance their positive impact on the local community and increase the region's value. To create a greater impact also involves looking at a broader picture, the whole ecosystem of outer and inner sustainability. This is why it was important for us to use inner development methods in the process, and introduce Norway’s best to the global inner goals: Inner Development Goals.

 

"The challenges of climate change and environmental degradation have been pressing societal issues for decades. While there has been significant focus on finding technical solutions, it is essential that we also pay attention to the human conditions needed to address these and other challenges. Awake is unique in Norway for its emphasis on the Inner Development Goals, and this approach is evident throughout their process. We need to enhance our inner capacities, especially the qualities that will help us navigate an increasingly complex world. This focus will not only enable us to tackle challenges but also maintain our inner resilience, ensuring happiness, motivation, and purpose. I believe this will be crucial for how companies conduct their business in the future and their ability to create meaningful and sustainable change while succeeding in their markets." says Theres Kiboko.

Awake and Norway's best
People: Marte Alstad Hansen, Theres Kiboko, Camilla Elise Berg, Arve Tokvam and Anne Mæland Hirt.

"We look forward to seeing what Norway’s Best achieves moving forward. They are truly a forward-thinking community builder that is leading the way in the tourism industry on sustainable development. Their collaborative approach to creating value and making smart, sustainable choices for the future will add value for many generations to come." concludes Marte Alstad Hansen, Creative Director at Awake.







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