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It’s hard to believe that we’re already halfway through 2022. But in addition to barbecues and beach trips, the summer also gives us time to reflect back on the beginning of the year and look forward towards the second half. At Liberty Mutual, it is a time to reflect on how we live our purpose to help people embrace today and confidently pursue tomorrow. One of the many milestones for us was the release of our annual Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) Review and Giving Report this spring. These reports make me incredibly proud and are a good reminder of our commitment to supporting our employees, customers and communities. While Liberty Mutual has always been committed to social good, making environmentally conscious decisions and upholding the highest standards in corporate governance, the formalization of our Office of Sustainability and enterprise ESG strategy is still fairly new, and it’s great to see the progress we’re making! Our latest reports tell stories about how we’re supporting the global energy transition; highlight the commitments we are making in diversity, equity and inclusion; and show how our employees are having an impact in the communities where we live and operate through their volunteering and charitable giving.
Our shared purpose guides our ESG strategy at Liberty Mutual, and we’ve learned a lot since launching our formal ESG program. As I reflect on the ESG journey that we are on I am reminded how essential it is to have a shared purpose and set of corporate values to chart our path and navigate a rapidly changing world.
Here are the top three learnings we’ve realized at Liberty Mutual by keeping our purpose at the center of our ESG strategy.
As business leaders, we’re faced each day with making choices about where to invest our time and resources. This was the situation for Liberty Mutual in 2019 as we discussed the establishment of a central sustainability function. The formal term “ESG” kept coming up during different conversations, but at the same time, we knew that we were already doing ESG-related work across the business (like a well -established office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and the work Liberty Mutual Foundation leads).
Ultimately, we looked at our purpose and further strengthened our commitment by establishing ESG as one of our core business priorities. This naturally led us to formalizing our approach by establishing an Office of Sustainability. We continue to use our purpose as a key filter for “why we do what we do,” which ultimately informs our corporate strategy.
If our purpose helps us define our “why,” our values guide us on “how.” Once we decided to formalize our enterprise ESG strategy, our values helped define our initial steps towards taking action.
From the start, we prioritized putting people first. While we had ideas about ESG imperatives, it was important for us to build a strategy that was representative and reflective of our stakeholders. This meant that we sought out comprehensive feedback – both with our employees as well as customers and external partners.
We took great care in collecting anonymous, confidential input from a broad representation of stakeholders. Taking this approach helped ensure that we were receiving open, honest input that would help us define the areas where Liberty Mutual should focus and where we could bring value and perspective to solving critical problems. This involvement in the research and design phase of our strategy also helped create stronger connections with our employees and external stakeholders as we began this work.
We maintained this engagement as we launched our ESG strategy, especially with our employees. We knew that to be successful and create real change, our employees needed to understand the role they play in supporting our ESG efforts. During the first year of our strategy, we brought employees in as much as possible – participating in panel discussions and trainings, and getting involved with volunteering efforts, so that they felt connected to the journey.
As we’ve progressed on our ESG journey, our knowledge has grown. And while ESG is, at times,
complex, we have worked to keep communications and reports simple so our stakeholders can
understand our actions.
In addition to simplicity, we are also committed to transparency. Our annual ESG Review and Giving reports are one way we are sharing that information with stakeholders. As the ESG landscape
continues to evolve, the frameworks for reporting – particularly around climate – will continue to
evolve. We will continue to lean into transparent and responsible information sharing, and be
active in conversations shaping meaningful reporting frameworks.
Executive Vice President, Chief Administrative Officer
Liberty Mutual Insurance