How to transform and lead, in the age of sustainability now: the Coca-Cola Company

Miguel Mira, Director of Public Affairs and Communication of Coca-Cola Iberia, shared with us his thoughts on how to build a Sustainable brand. Coke, by the way, is celebrating its 130th anniversary as a brand, a mark that is not easily achieved.

Miguel mentioned that sustainability for him and for Coca-Cola Co. derives from how responsive you are to changes society demands from your company and it is guided by the way you build trust not only with customers, but with all your stakeholders. For that, Miguel mentioned that 6 guiding principles are implemented at the Company:

  1. Risks – you have to be willing to take risks in order to evolve. This is especially critical when you are a top player and you might be tempted not to innovate.
  2. Emotions – in times of crises, advertising campaigns appeal more to the emotional side of consumers.
  3. Consistency – you have to be able to “walk the talk” or be coherent with your speech in all the levels of the company.
  4. Transparency – Society will be constantly demanding transparency from your company and you have to be ready for that.
  5. Corporate Responsibility – Companies have to be aware of their responsibility and the overall impact on the society. As managers, we have to prepare the business for the future.
  6. Employees – employees are key stakeholders for the company. Nobody better than the employees to carry the “message” of the brand.

“When you’re comfortable, the temptation to quit taking risks is so great, it’s almost irresistible. And failure is almost inevitable.” – Don Keough, former President and COO of the Coca-Cola Company

Danilo Denardi Rosa da Silva, SB Barcelona 2016 Volunteer, MBA Class of 2017, IESE Business School