We advocate for policies and programs that promote the triple bottom line.
The Progress Group knows business and government and how the public policy works for each stakeholder. With experience working on policy issues within the United Nations system, NYC government and various state legislatures, we help companies, non profits and government agencies develop cutting-edge policies and programs. From our work with the City of Denver on climate prosperity, to recruiting companies to support federal legislation promoting the federal Green Jobs Act of 2007 and Clean Energy Manufacturing bills of 2009, we provide valuable guidance to companies and governments that seek to build markets, create jobs and increase sustainability.
Our work focuses on building policy-directed coalitions and advocacy for targeted policy initiatives and legislation, primarily in the clean energy and sustainable economic fields. We also provide research and policy briefs for private and non-profits on the opportunities within the emerging green economy.
Business and Policy: If you’re not at the table, you’re on the menu.
Our work is guided by a central premise - policy matters. It matters to your company’s top and bottom lines. From tax incentives for urban development projects to workforce development programs to green procurement standards, policies – existing and proposed – have a big impact on the way the private sector does business.
For many businesses, involvement in the policy or legislative process is a ‘necessary evil’. Too often businesses are isolated from the public sector, discouraged by bureaucracy and challenged or confused by political rhetoric. With the rules of the broader economic system and financial markets being re-written, the policy space (and ability to influence it) is wide open. The Progress Group can help you navigate through the policy process. We’ll prove that there’s an upside to being involved.
Bringing people and ideas together.
For the past twenty-five years, Richard has been connecting people and ideas. Creating conferences, roundtables, symposiums, policy forums and related events that bring people together to explore cutting edge socioeconomic, environmental, energy and political issues is an on-going passion and skill. He has convened programs for the United Nations Environment Programme, The World Bank, The Apollo Alliance, AFL-CIO and many not-for-profits. These hands-on programs are experiential and results-oriented. They have one theme in common: convening forward-thinking people to accelerate innovation for progressive social and economic change. My network of leading business, environmental, labor, social justice, venture capital, foundation, academic and political leaders guarantees a brilliant exchange of ideas and possibilities.
Our services include: sculpting the agenda, moderating the program, recruiting speakers, securing sponsors and ensuring the participants find common ground.
Mapping the plan for success.
We work with private companies, public agencies and non-profit groups to guide development of their vision and craft a strategy to execute on their mission. Whether the need is to flesh out a plan for a citywide climate abatement strategy or attract new customers throughout the nation for your sustainable business service, we can help.
The first step is to understand the ‘value add’ and competitive landscape for an idea or business product. This involves gathering ‘market intelligence’. The second is to determine what resources are available now and what additional ones need be secured. The third is to map out a structured, yet fluid plan of action – identifying the best opportunities and leverage points now and in the mid-term.
In working with clients, Richard applies his big picture understanding of how policy and business intersect. His hands-on experience in successfully guiding the growth of several solar energy companies’ will be equally useful whether you’re launching a new business venture or a legislative campaign.
Supporting Social Entrepreneurs.
We are committed to using market forces to increase economic opportunities. We work with both resourced and under-resourced social entrepreneurs to support the growth of their early stage, triple bottom line ventures.
We are committed to finding opportunities for low and moderate-income entrepreneurs who is committed to a social mission. Our Responsible Economy Roundtable is a forum for connecting nascent social entrepreneurs with more experienced business people. Our goal is to identify business strategies, financial instruments and partnerships that will spawn new ventures which value people and community as much as profit.
Fundraising: Our success is based on understanding coalitions
We raise funds for non-profits involved in clean energy, sustainability issues. We know who to ask, for how much and when. As the Business Outreach Director for the Apollo Alliance for four years, Richard raised several hundred thousand dollars from leading private energy efficiency, renewable and professional service firms. Richard is also an experienced fundraiser for political candidates and environmental causes.
We work with investors and private equity funds to increase their involvement in clean energy, low-carbon, green infrastructure investment opportunities. Our goal is to move capital toward productive assets that create good jobs, community wealth and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Today, success demands community engagement.
Society’s expectations of business are changing. Corporations are increasingly being asked to help solve our global challenges. The tenor of the policy debate is shifting from the ‘shareholder’ (how can the company benefit) to the ‘stakeholder’ era (how can the company and the community benefit). In this changing political climate, The Progress Group brings experience in helping companies craft community relations strategies that:
Our experience teaching at Boston College’s Center for Corporate Citizenship and working with leading environmental and social justice groups, imparts knowledge of how key trends can positively impact your bottom line. We help companies understand where a market ‘gap’ exists and how they can create a win-win with marginalized communities.
Proven strategies to frame the debate.
We advise candidates, campaigns and communications firms on strategies to frame the ‘clean energy – economic development’ message. Richard played a key role in Colorado Governor Bill Ritter’s 2006 election victory by helping to craft the “New Energy Economy’ strategy, which highlighted the economic and environmental benefits of renewable energy. His proven strategies will resonate with key constituencies and the broader voting public
Richard also raises funds for political races, calling on a national rolodex of associates in the clean energy industry.