This case study explores the leadership challenges generating buy-in for enterprise-wide sustainability, strategies to manage the political environment, approaches to designing governance structures, systems, and processes, efforts to measure new value, and approaches to sustain and scale successful innovations.
In 2016, the Minnesota Department of Administration’s Office of Continuous Improvement led an initiative to assess and improve how the state manages its internal sustainability reporting and efforts. After some initial fact-finding, the team discovered there were unconnected reporting requirements, a variety of approaches to sustainability activities, and no coordinated effort to understand outcomes or identify opportunities for improvements. This case study examines how Minnesota responded and the Department of Administration’s newly formed Office of Enterprise Sustainability, in collaboration with the Continuous Improvement team, led a statewide project to build a streamlined and effective governance structure with state agencies to use. In particular, participants will examine how the team built a case for change, developed cross-agency relationships, managed initiative fatigue, led culture change components, and established new systems, structures, and processes. The case study also examines the legacy of this program during a gubernatorial transition.