HEINEKEN USA Speaks at 6th Responsible Business Summit

HEINEKEN USA recently spoke at the 6th Responsible Business Summit event in Responsible Business SummitNew York City. The event focused on long-term impact for industry and society, highlighting the future of sustainable and responsible business.

Ronald Den Elzen, President and CEO, Heineken USA, gave the closing keynote address in which he discussed the need to create urgency for change in an organization. He invited listeners to think about solutions and partners at a local level, measure against targets, and make goals public in order to put pressure on the leadership team.

When asked how to drive transformational change, Ronald noted that you need to understand the people you are seeking to motivate, and be able to dream, think big in order to go where you need to go. He highlighted the need for inspiration and ambition to drive change.

“When we talked about putting a man on the moon, we didn’t necessarily know how to do it,” he said. “But we dreamt big and made it happen.”

HEINEKEN USA is willing to think outside the box. Ronald reinforced that – if you’re not willing to do that – you’ll only see incremental change, not transformational change. And when giving a longer-term horizon of 10-20 years for people to work towards, you’ll get much, much bigger ideas.

He also highlighted the importance of understanding local conditions and operating at a local level, as well as building local coalitions. Ronald noted, “While it’s important to have global goals, activations need to be at a local level.”

According to Ronald, HEINEKEN wants to do what’s right for the future. “We are committed to making our company and planet better,” he says. “We want to leave the world better than how we inherited it.”

By saving water and decreasing CO2 emissions, companies can see massive cost savings. Ronald noted, “This is not only about the bottom line impact, it’s about doing what’s right.”

In conclusion, he called out: “We can fight with our competitors about market share and innovation, but we only have one planet. We should not fight competitors when trying to save it.”