BY HEATHER LAWLEY
global head of diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) and environmental, social and governance (ESG)
For many of us at Sedgwick, 2021 offered a fresh perspective on the world. Between the lingering COVID-19 pandemic and the occurrence of multiple natural disasters, we gained a renewed appreciation for the interconnectedness and fragility of our global ecosystem. In particular, societal restrictions related to the pandemic disrupted our behavior patterns and encouraged us to spend more time outside. Perhaps one silver lining of COVID was rediscovering the great outdoors. Whether dining under the stars, walking around our neighborhoods, or vacationing in the woods or the mountains, 2021 brought us closer to nature.
Caring for planet Earth
This connection to nature, combined with a heightened emphasis on environmental issues in the area of ESG, was in the forefront of our minds when selecting the focus of Sedgwick’s 2021 season of giving campaign. Our caring counts philosophy extends to caring for the Earth, and it’s a cause that is meaningful and important to our global clients, colleagues and the communities we serve.
The goal of our campaign — whose theme was “Seeing the world through a new lens” — was to highlight the need for protecting our ecosystem, so planet Earth can thrive long into the future. We encouraged Sedgwick colleagues, customers and friends to commit to small, incremental changes to their personal consumption habits, with an eye toward making a significant collective impact.
Additionally, we invited participants to help us celebrate our amazing planet by sharing photos of nature they took in 2021. We received more than 360 stunning submissions from across North America, Europe, Asia and Australia.
Conservation International was our nonprofit partner for the campaign. Since 1987, Conservation International has worked to spotlight and secure the critical benefits that nature provides to humanity — including, as explained on the organization’s website, every breath we take, every drop we drink and every bite we eat. Their efforts serve to protect more than 2.3 million square miles (6 million square kilometers) of land and sea across more than 70 countries. The organization uses science, policy and partnerships to tackle the climate crisis and create a cleaner, healthier planet. As part of the season of giving, Sedgwick donated to Conservation International to support their vital efforts and encouraged campaign participants to do the same.
Our 2021 season of giving campaign not only engaged our 30,000 global colleagues, but also reached around 18,000 people on social media and drew nearly 3,000 visits to our website. Our hope is that the campaign left a lasting positive impact on the environment, gave participants a better understanding of how their consumption habits affect the Earth’s ecosystem, and helped people to see the wonders of the natural world through a new lens.
What’s next in ESG?
At Sedgwick, taking care of people — our colleagues, clients and communities — is at the heart of everything we do. We aspire to lead our industry in acting with purpose and social consciousness and to promote sustainable practices. While Sedgwick has long practiced the principles of ESG simply because it’s the right thing to do, we are now working to bring together our efforts in these areas under a single strategic framework. These include our support for environmental causes (like our 2021 season of giving campaign and reducing our use of paper in favor of digital files); our social impact through things such as charitable giving, diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) initiatives and colleague engagement; our governance practices, such as commitment to business ethics and data privacy and protection; and more.
All of these undertakings are informed by and demonstrate our belief that caring counts. The Sedgwick organization is founded on the notion of making things right and making a difference in the world, one person and one step at a time. We look forward to sharing more about our expanding ESG efforts in the months ahead.