Season 3, Episode 095: Adam Hall
Internet Fusion | Outdoor retail | July 27th 2020 | 45:03
Adam Hall is the head of sustainability at Internet Fusion, a group of online retailers that operate in majority outdoor sports, such as mountain sports, ocean sports, and action sports.
Highlights of Adam Hall
- They took a decisive action in 2015 by reducing plastic by 75%.
- In 2019, they reached 99,81% plastic free for patching.
- Sustainability is a core part of the business that help them connect with their customers as a whole lifestyle.
- They are leading the reduction of plastics which is bringing back a massive reaction and huge support from their customers.
"I think there's that whole point of pausing and just do the right thing. If you're in a position, the whole point of sustainability is to do the right thing.".
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Will Richardson - 00:02
Adam, welcome to the green element podcast. Thank you so much for joining us today. And you come from internet fusion. Could you tell us a bit about you and your business, please?
Adam Hall - 00:15
Yeah, of course. Internet fusion is a group of online retailers that operate in majority outdoor sports. So, we have stuff down which is mountain sports, ocean sports, action sports. And we have dirt bike bits, which is a motocross website. We have a couple of outdoor sites, web talks and dirt and black leaf and a couple of questions sites so Derby house and right away but essentially, we are a specialist niche retailer, online retailer. And what we do is we bring them all into one central hub. So, they will benefit from economies of scale through joined up marketing, joined up warehousing, joined operations during that finance, which makes each of those smaller niche websites much stronger as a collective, essentially. And me, my name's Adam Hall, I'm head of sustainability. And yeah, I look after all the elements of the business to make us some as sustainable as possible. And being an outdoor website collective of websites. And the natural world is massively important to our customers. It's massively important to us as a business a lot. Many of our staff are engaged in the very sports we endorse. So, it's crucially important that we are doing us at most for the environment. And so yeah, yeah, that's who we are.
Will Richardson - 01:57
Brilliant. Thank you so much, and can you tell us a bit about your purpose and who you work with?
Adam Hall - 02:05
Will Richardson - 02:07
The company, the company, and I guess what I'm trying to do is trying to understand you're talking about sustainability and I and I know from working with you how strong and embedded sustainability is in within your organisation so what I'm trying to draw out of is where does that come from? What's your purpose? why you've talked about customers? How do you know your customers are talking about it? Like where it comes from.
Adam Hall - 02:37
Where is that drive come from? Well, I think you know first time and from Cote second row, it's our customer base. We are we're providing our customers with highly technical products. So, they and fashion product products too, but and lifestyle products that go with it, but it is the products that people will go out and do the thing that they're passionate about. Right so for you, it would be your kite surfing kit, you know, it's, you're massively engaged in that it's got an emotional connection to it. And then our customers are going out and enjoying these, these recreational sports in the great outdoors. And actually what they're finding is, is as you probably do, you know, you step over a title on a plastic, you know, or you're arriving in the mountains for your well-earned week in the snow or weekend or whatever. And you're finding snows rubbish because it's rained in the middle of winter, because the climates breaking down, you know, you're finding that you're taking your horse out on your favourite trail, and it's just completely washed out. And actually, the horses damaged its foot because it can't make it up a track or a trail because it's totally washed out because there's too much rain. So we were very much engaged in the sports that we endorse, and so much so that we are Participants ourselves, and we're very well connected with our with our customer base and as many of our brands so that, that this whole theme of sustainability flows through that whole lifestyle and through our business. So, it's fundamentally important for us. And having said that we are a leader in particularly plastics, and with your help, but we are becoming more so around climate change. And so why do we care about it more when I guess, and why are we doing more than others? I guess it's come down to a variety of different individuals through throughout this sustainability journey that we've been on since 2014. And it I mean, it has to start with Justin stone, who is the founder and CEO of surf Dame and who we went for a big screen one day and he really he just had a chat saying we can do about this and it kind of stemmed from there. There was a CTO at the time called Joe Sims. And he was hugely passionate, and they watched the film trashed. And if you remember the film trashed by Jeremy Irons, and they were they, they literally got to do something about this. And, and in a long story short, we took really decisive action in 2015. And we eliminated 74% of the plastic from our own outbound packaging in one quarter. And by the end of that year, the whole project was net positive. And there's quite a long story. But through taking that decisive action, our customer base just hugely reacted to that. The industry reacted to that, and the sustainability world reacted to that. And it was we literally got the wind in our sails, and it was, it just reaffirmed what we needed to do and it was just such a positive action that and it was such a bold action that everything else afterwards has just meant it is much, much easier. And we find that our customers hugely react to anything that we do around sustainability. We're finding some of our key brands are massively reacting and hugely supportive of what we do. And we're growing business with those brands where perhaps they would question whether they should grow with us if we weren't doing that. So, yeah, and I mean, the list goes on with the positivity around it, we, we attract, and we maintain great stuff because they want to be involved with a business with purpose. And I think essentially, it's come from that it's come from personal drive within key figureheads within the business. Yeah, and the ability to do it. We had an operations manager at the time called Raj and he was like an eight-lane freeway just go operations managers, generally brick walls. And that's continued. We've got Dudley Rogers, who's our operations director now and Ben range Croft, he's our operations manager in the warehouse. And they just completely understand it, they've just opened their eyes to it. And, and it's, it all stems from that initial activation that we've really kind of opened up and, and we've appreciated what it's doing. But it's around the key element that we keep on bringing back from in a business context. It's around values driven marketing. And that's something that Philip Kotler a very, very prominent marketer has, has been talking about a lot lately. And that's where businesses are diving very deep into the values of their customers. And actually, those businesses I've been very successful Because if a customer can feel that through dealing with a company, they match their values that they know they're in the right place. Yeah.
Will Richardson - 02:54
Okay. That's really, that's really interesting. I've got a couple of questions on the back of that. And quite early on you said, you in the in that first quarter in 2015, you reduced your plastic by 75% by the end of the year, you are net positive. Can you just help me understand what net positive on plastic packaging means please?
Adam Hall - 08:31
Yeah, absolutely. So sorry, net positive in in in a financial sense. So essentially, we are biggest the biggest plastic body we have in our business was the polybag. The poly mane bag, as any online business will know, these are super cheap, super-efficient, they're waterproof. The protective products are fantastic, great fit for purpose. They're awful for the environment. We all know that, and you can't recycle them, and they just cause havoc. So that creates a problem. Just over nine tons of our plastic footprint, and which was the vast majority, I haven't got the percentage of what that was worth, but it would be between 60 and 75%. Now to revert to paper or cardboard, there was 110% uplift in price that just doesn't wash when you go to a financial director. So, we had to rethink that whole strategy and what we did is we took a holistic approach to sustainability. And the first rule of sustainability is you reduce if you reduce you save money. And so, every other sustainability action that we took that saved us money, we ring fence that money, and we reinvested it into that hundred and 10% more expensive cable box. So, in that first year, we sent 2.5 million packages. If you can imagine that cost lift is 110% over those 2.5 million packages. That was horrific. And so actually, with all the savings we made, the net cost of that project was only 900 quid. By the end of the year, we were actually sorting our waste so well, that we were selling our recycling. And which actually tipped us into a net positive. Right? Yeah, but I just want to point out that actually, what we're really proud of is it was 74% reduction in plastic at that stage, but in 2019, we reached 99.81% plastic free for patching. So, we're proud of that.
Will Richardson - 10:37
Should put you in touch with another company that have a kite surfing company, that have tried to minimise that plastic and are struggling to send kites not in plastic, because they're shipping them from, say, China. They've actually got a couple of sites around the world and in the rain and customers want a kite that hasn't been touched. And they have struggled not using plastic and working out how to send it. I think it's I think it's really important to understand how difficult the difficulty is you've just don't you've overcome, because it's all very well to say you can just swap from one thing to another, but you're battling with so many different geographical areas of the world and weather patterns whilst shipping things and so I think I think that's pretty amazing, personally.
Adam Hall - 11:37
Yeah, absolutely. And actually, even those geographical locations as his operational factors, there's social factors, you know, some of them with from an environmental point of view that was very clear, don't do this, do this. And a classic one is going from plastic tape to paper tape. Easy. Simple, paper tape is cheaper and stronger. Okay, figure out why anyone's using plastic. So, but operationally, and the tape we chose isn't that the first point the first time and your patients seem to hate it hated using it. And we had to overcome that. And we persevered and actually, the founder’s cookout and actually began so it was just a managing change. So, yeah, I mean, that's, that's just one element and actually looking at all of them and, and actually, how, how stable is the supply chain? That's another point. You know, plastic is just endless. They just pump the stuff out quickly, as cheaply as you want with no problem with a supply chain. That can't be said for every single other material. Yeah, yeah. lots of elements. Yeah. Yeah. It's been a great journey. Yeah. So just to recap, 99.81% plastic free, and from a 94.44% recycled content, natural fire. as well. So common criticism, if you move away from plastic and you go to natural fibres is, is there can be deforestation. We've squarely addressed that by using 94.44% recycled materials across our packaging chain.
Will Richardson - 13:16
It's pretty, it's really, really good. That's pretty good. And I think the other thing I picked up on that's just worth a mention to anyone listening is you mentioned your operations director and your operations manager. And that just shows that the company has got buying across the board, which I would hazard a guess makes your life as head of sustainability so much easier because you've got a cohesive approach to sustainability. And everyone is trying to achieve the same goals. And we've all got different hats within the company, and to have everyone in different parts actually go, right. Okay. In this department, we need to be doing this. It's probably incredibly useful.
Adam Hall - 14:06
Yeah, it is. And it's it is a really collaborative team approach. And it's really refreshing because in previous lives, I've been in situations where you just, you're just butting heads the whole time. And it's like, well, I've got this agenda, you've got this agenda and, you know, with the way that we work is, is, you know, Dudley will call me up and he'll say, Adam, what's the sustainability consideration in this scenario? And that's fantastic, you know, and it's just that, that open conversation and actually, it's like, Adam, nice being this concept or needs to be in this meeting. And it's not necessarily my core role, but I'm there as a as to give that voice for sustainability. And actually, you know, it's what I really respect with what Ben and there's a guy called Chris Martin in our warehouse, he's another warehouse manager, is they know, they've got KPIs and I go to them and I asked them to have worse KPIs when they do, you know and it's known trap business you know they flag it they say look, it's out of stock and they flag it and they know it's core to our business you know and actually what's really heartening is it well I won't go into detail but something I didn't have any influence over and I was like guys why we're using cardboard trays here on the show on the on the racking and they're like, because we're classifying company anything you know, I didn't have to kind of go in and yeah, so it's, it's, yeah, it's really heartening to be at that, that stage now where it's, it's we've gone through the bulk and we've gone through that pain and it's now as I think we'll come on to look back a little bit later. It's about getting accreditation and certification for this and then really type scientists 10 screws on the finer details.
Will Richardson - 16:02
Can you tell us a bit about how you've engaged your staff, suppliers and customers with that mission and purpose?
Adam Hall - 16:09
Yeah, so, I think with I'm not particularly great at engaging our staff because I, I'm the kind of character that just gets my head down and get on with it. And, but, you know, the operations team, we do some, some talks in the warehouse for our operations team. And, and, and we produce a lot of videos which, which, you know, we try and engage them in those videos and, um, you know, we really sing the praises of what we've achieved. And as far as staff goes, we do have things like a sustainability channel, which is very, very reactive. You know, we do some internal talks, and we also have sustainability champions. So, they are positioned in each of the offices and, and they essentially help me gather data about those offices. But the people on the ground and then they, you know, they've got a bit of free rein to come up with anything that's specific to their location. So yeah, I guess around that, essentially you are preaching to the converted with our stuff because they, you know, they're dealing with a brand, they're a buyer, they're dealing with a brand new sustainability conscious, if they're in the marketing team, they know that their customers are sustainable, somebody's conscious as well. So, they there were already you know, most people are engaged in some of the sports we endorse so. So, it's, it's quite easy in that context. You know, I, I do talk to us quite a lot through different conferences, which is, which is great. I think where we're really strong is engaging our supply chain. And that's where we've, we are very aware that we need to use our sphere of influence, you know, it's all very well as having a highly sustainable warehouse. You know, carbon reduction strategies and plastic reduction strategies, but with just this one business, you know, in, in one part of a country in the world, you know, we need to spread that influence. And we do that through our supply chain. And we do that to our customers as well as we go in both directions. But through influencing our supply chain, we see the biggest opportunity. And so, we have something called a delivery policy that actually has a whole section on the materials they can send us. So, the packaging materials. As far as we can tell, when we launched that back in 2018, it was the first of its kind, certainly in our industry, at least, and anywhere else that we could find really, but it was it. It was a best practice guide. So, we wanted it to be very collaborative, very practical, very pragmatic, and useful tool for these businesses. Not just statement that if you send us plastic, we're going to find you, you know, it had to be a tool that actually we knew would make meaningful change. So it's a delivery policy for every single element that they send us from, from the swing tags that you find in the back of your shirt through to how a pallets delivered, you know, and everything in between. And it's a traffic light system. So the red zone is will no longer accept it things like black plastic wrap for a pallet because he can't really recycle it coloured tape on those pallets, you know, we no longer accept plastic tape of boxes in our little metal eyelets on your swing tag, because you're blending materials, it's difficult to recycle. So, the red zone is a not the orange zone is minimum accepted. And then there's a green zone which we actually want to aim for. And it's a live document. So, we updated, and we put in new recommendations as we find them as the guy, that's that might done really well. And we've used a very collaborative approach with delivering that, in the fact that we invited all of our 800 brands into a warehouse day. And we, we asked the operations team to be very quiet as we put on a presentation for the day and, and we delivered that delivery policy. And, and we explained in person why that was important to us. And as I explained it, I pushed up a bale of plastic and I pushed up a huge chunk of, of hangers, and I was like, we can't, can't keep on going like this, we need to start producing these elements. And that went down really well really, really well. It was overwhelmingly positive and, and brands would often say to us, but we knew we had to do something weren't entirely sure what to do. You've given us a guide, and you're one of our major customers and you've given us the short sharp beat to get this going. So that was really great. One of my favourite comments was one of one of our biggest brands said if we change for you, we have to change for everyone.
Adam Hall - 21:08
So that's on the plastic front but we also which I'm really excited and I know that Green Element of very much involved in this too is the power pledge one of our charity partners protect our winters UK go check them out. And we we've been one of their partners from the get-go and I've worked very closely with them so much so that I'm now a trustee of the charity as well which is great. But it's we've developed a power pledge, and this is around climate change. And it's an eight pledge system, which is again very practical, very pragmatic, and it's very lightweight, but it's almost like a your entry point your starting point your guide to set your climate and your positive climate actions going forward. So, we're going to launch that in September. And that'd be launched all right 800 brands, where we're going to be strongly recommending, they take that as well to, to really make some positive impact. So. So from that point of view, we're trying to influence our brands and the industry as much as we possibly can, you know, using our position and our sphere of influence to influence the brands. And we'll also in the other way, try to influence our customers. And what we do is we have things like a sustainable gear listing, which is just a listing full of products that have sustainability attributes to try and encourage our customers to make more sustainable choices, encourages us to push brands to make more and do more. And then we have sustainable gear drop down searches as well. So, if you want to only search for an organic tea, you can do that. And so, it's just trying to influence both directions, you know, as being the conduit, if you like, between a brand and a retail customer. So yeah, that's, that's, that's where we influence and I think to answer your question, we're not I'm not so great at engaging with staff, but we are very strongly engaged with our brands.
Will Richardson - 23:17
I think by pure virtue of the fact that you've got engagement across your companies, means that you probably are quite good engaging your staff. But when it comes to running an ethical and sustainable business, what would you say has been the biggest struggle so far? And can you tell us a bit? Tell us a bit about how you've overcome it?
Adam Hall - 23:40
Yeah, you know, what, I think is communication. And I think that's, you know, I, you probably can tell already, I tend to talk about lots of different angles, and I need to learn to condense and just stick to key messaging because there's a few things that we've learned over time that you, you have to almost go with a 123 approach because that's instantly communicated or it's digestible. And I think that's always been our challenges. You know, there's a lot of complexities and terminologies around sustainability that everybody gets, and if you start rattling off percentages and figures and, and people can switch off and if you start having complicated messaging, so that that was always difficult was communicating to our brands, you know, communicating to the operations on the teams on the ground, and even communicating with the, with the marketing teams on what we've actually achieved. So, I think that's, that's always been a challenge for us is, is particularly around, communicating to our brands about what we want to achieve, because that communication can be very, very disjointed. You know, you can be dealing with a sales rep for a brand, he, you know, they've got a different agenda entirely. And so actually breaking through that communication of me to our buyer to their sales rep, to their operations team. You know, that's a challenge. And actually, you know,
Adam Hall - 25:18
that that message can be distorted through each of those be. So that's always been a challenge for us. Yeah. Okay. Yeah.
Will Richardson - 25:28
Could you offer one piece of advice for our listeners that could help them with that purpose? And if so, what would that be? Yeah.
Adam Hall - 25:38
Yeah, I mean, I thought about this and I think it's, it's really simple. And it's, it's, it's just a pause, you know, for everything you do and even in your daily life. She just pauses and just give yourself a few seconds to actually think okay, is the most sustainable choice, should I be looking at more sustainable options. And if you just give yourself that pause and every decision that you make, you'll give yourself time to consider. And actually, just okay, I'm just going to have a quick look and see what other sustainable alternatives there are. And, and consider them you know, and actually implement them. And before you know it, you'll, you'll be making changes in everything you do. And, you know, it ceases when you go to restaurant or go out to eat, or, you know, wherever you need to buy some, it's wrapped in plastic we know. You know, and it's the same in a business context, you know, you you're going to buy into a certain range or you're going to buy into a product line or you're going to invest as a financial institution in in x y Zed just pause you know, it's and then ask yourself is that the right thing? Do you know and I think so pause and just always do the right thing? Just always do the right thing and try and do the right thing. Everything else falls into place, then you, everyone will see that you do the right thing. Everyone will want to be a part of you, everyone wants to work for your business everyone wants to buy from your business. You know, everybody wants a piece of people that are doing the right thing. Yeah. And do the right thing.
Will Richardson - 27:30
Like it. When it comes to reducing your environmental impact and carbon footprint of your business. What would you say your biggest challenge was or frustration?
Adam Hall - 27:42
Yeah, I guess. I guess that's it's been around collecting data. Really. That's as far as the carbon reporting gaze is. That's always been the most difficult part for us as has been, either going to one of our many lives landlords or trying to decipher old spreadsheets that weren't our own and actually trying to crawl that data from different places. And that's, that's, that's been probably one of the biggest challenges. On the carbon side, you know, we're very fortunate actually, that we've got a highly sustainable warehouse. It's, it's some, it's just outside the top 1% most sustainable buildings in the country according to the Brianne rating. And that actually comes with a system called fabric. And that's a that's a building management system, which will tell me if a plug sockets be turned on in the building, and it tells me everything at the touch of a button. And that is phenomenal, because I just download that data. Off we go, we know exactly what's going on in that warehouse. But with other buildings, it's trying to go through a building manager and trying to claw that data out and then sometimes it's completely different from month to month. So that's a challenge. And I think I think that's across the board with most people. So, you know, one thing that I think we all need to start working towards is standardisation of that type of data because it's quite complex trying to pull it all apart. And, and I think from the plastic side, that's kind of complex in the sense that there's so many alternatives out there. I think this subject has matured considerably over the last two or three years. It's a very fast-moving sustainability subject. And some of the alternative materials you know, there's pitfalls, and there's that there's sometimes worse you know that. I mean, the oxide additive bags are horrific for the environment, but they were dubbed as the solution and it's an additive that just breaks the bag into smaller and smaller pieces. So, yeah, there's that that was a challenge. And I think, for me, it took me in 2015, probably about six months before it really started to form an educated opinion and decision on all the materials we should be using. And we're very confident in what we've chosen now. But what I'm finding consistently when we deal with those 800 brands is, I'm still having to have those same conversations that we went through in 2015. And I think that's, that's one of the complexities and actually, what you find with both of those elements is they all come down from actually tackling physical protein itself, you know, data gathering, I could spend that time in, in in in sourcing renewables or working out an energy efficiency plan and reducing our energy or, or, or flipping out contracts, renewable energy, you know, with, with sourcing all those different or trying to figure out what those different plastic options are or alternatives are actually, if we had that at hand we could just do it, you know, and I think that's, that is a that's a challenge for the small to medium sized businesses. You know, we are, we are just short 100-million-pound turnover business so we're not huge, we're not small. But there is very little guidance for our size and below, around plastics around carbon reporting. You know, the big guys, they have the Ellen MacArthur Foundation for plastics and the new plastic economy. You know, the mega corporates, you can sign up and have endless amounts of gardens from those go to a fantastic event. They really are. And if you've got the money, you can have A lot of assistance around your carbon reporting and puts that building management systems in place. But for the student’s mediums, it's, it is complex, it's difficult and you do have to, you have to try and figure it out yourself. Yeah.
Will Richardson - 32:15
Can you tell us a bit about how you approach environmental management and carbon footprinting within internet fusion?
Adam Hall - 32:22
Yeah, it's, it's quite guerilla. We are, we are an actions, retailer, and Outdoor Retailer, you know, and our customers, they go out and they take action. And that is the lifeblood of what we do. And for us, up until this point, pretty much well, this year, we've been all about taking action. So, we have avoided getting bogged down in a lot of reporting. We will be getting bogged down in a lot of certification and awards. And we've just avoided that actually what we've done is just gone, right? Okay, we need to sort this out. And the classic example is getting rid of 74% of plastic in 2015, you know, getting up to 99.81% plastic free now, we've just taken action. We've seen a problem and we've taken action. We've done our research because I know a lot of people will be sitting there again, or we can't just have a knee jerk reaction. We've looked into what we should do. We've just gone ahead and done it. And it's the same way as we quadrupled our solar PV systems. In 2019, It was all about taking action and our recycling facilities in our warehouse we hit 94.404% recycling rates in our warehouse, zero to landfill organisation. So, we all those elements have got it downhill last year we will run even though a lot of buildings we don't run. And all of them we do run around 100% bio gas and 100% renewable electricity across the whole group we run on 90.09% renewable electricity 20% of electricity came from so that we put on so we've just been about taking action and it's big, bold action that is meaningful and it makes a difference. And now we're in that state of we've got this this this fantastic platform, you know, as I said, our warehouses are about sustainable as it can get. And it's, it's a phenomenal, great grey box. I love it. I get very excited about it. And it we've got this baseline and now we're in that phase where I think we were our approaches is maturing and it's changing. And we're beginning to monitor and actually start recording what we're doing and exactly what we're doing with review will with that green element with your compare your footprint platform, carbon reporting, you know, we, we now need to get this recorded, get this great work that we've done recorded, and start getting the certifications and start getting these accreditation for what we've done to make it more official. So in a name that actually, that will bolster our argument, when we go into the brands is, hey, look, you know that we've done stuff we've told you about it, but actually, it's now verified. So, join us and let's really start moving. And I think once we've gone through that stage, it's then about turning the screws and it's the final details and it's, it's all the hard to reach parts that we can really start, you know, making a difference. And so yeah, I think, you know, our strategy has been What's the word is not by the rulebook? It's, it's, it's literally just been, we need to do something. And, and I think that's, that's kind of been really good for us because we got wind in our sails, you know, we got to support our customers through it and I think that's, that's if anybody asked me if they should do that and how their strategy should look like if we've got this balanced of what's going to be popular, so you get longevity in your project. And then what is the biggest impact on the environment? What's the biggest limiting impact on your environment? And, and for us, unfortunately, both of those came together. It was very popular what we did, and we really limited our impact. And I think that's, that's just driven us forward. Ever since. So, yeah, yeah. So yeah, it's been hasn't been by the rulebook, it's not your traditional sustainability strategy that.
Will Richardson - 36:59
I've got one final question to ask you. And it's understanding whether you've got any advice or learning that you'd like to share with anyone listen to the podcast on your journey and becoming more sustainable.
Adam Hall - 37:15
Yeah, yeah. Well, I think it's, it is, you know, we've touched on it before. I think there's that whole point of pausing and just do the right thing. If you're in a position, the whole point of sustainability is to do the right thing. So if you aren't, if you're cheating yourself and trying to go for the cheaper option, or, again for the 10% reduction, or, you know, no one's going to Thank you, you know, the CEO, he's just going to, you know, but only about 10% your customers are never going to be queuing up. Because you've reduced by 10%. You know, it's so you know, it's the time is now we know we're all aware of the damage we're doing to the planet. We It's time for bold action. You know, there's no time for greenwash just don't do it. But just do the right thing, just you know, in every decision you make is you can look at it because of the financial implications or, or this is going to really affect operations or it's like, no, you're you are as a sustainability professional, you are the conscience of that business to do job, you know, and even if that is tough, even if you have to look at someone and just go, it's just not right. We just, we just can't do that, you know, I get it, you know, and just keep on going because that's, that's what you're there to do. That's what you were. That's why you've been brought into the business to do that. Just deliver that no matter how hard that is and admitted to everybody else and say that like you bought this is what you've got me to do. So, so do the right thing. Um, bye I also think is you've always got that trade off with any strategy that I just said about and, and that's achieving things that are popular, you know that that actually the business will react to your, your customer base will react to, you know, sometimes it is wise to do that. So, you get longevity in your project. And there may be a new trade off about that with the biggest impact you can have on the environment. And as I said, fortunately, both of those were the same for me, but that's a bit of a perfect storm. It's not the case for every business. But I just think, yeah, you've got it. You've got to figure out what bad looks like because if you start working on the nitty gritty, that nobody really notices that you're doing it. customers aren't reacting, the business isn't reacting, and you did lots of hard work and you're doing some great stuff that nobody notices. Then people will start questioning the project. So, you always have to balance that kind of heavy hitting popular efforts to give you longevity, perhaps then deal with the nitty gritty later. Yeah, there's no silver bullet there. But it's, it's about I think he's always trying to find that balance. And, yeah, because if you went straight in and I don't know, an example, you But you said, Look, we can no longer deal with a material source and 75% of the business was based on that material source, you know, it's not going to be a popular decision, you know, you need to build up that upsurge of, of support internally and externally before you go for those painful questions a bit later on. So yeah, I think that that's, that's always a bit of advice. And whenever you just do the right thing,
Will Richardson - 40:52
Brilliant. Well, what's the best way that we can connect with you and know more.
Adam Hall - 40:59
Well, but with me personally, you can drop me a line up on LinkedIn. And if you want to know who the business is, the best place to look for us is internet fusion.co.uk. And then you'll see all the different websites that we have the best way that you can engage with what we do would be to support the activations that we do around sustainability. And I'd say that with any business, you know, if you see a business making a genuine effort, just support it, you know, because that's, that's, that's going to mean that that continues and they'll do another activation and they'll do more and more and more. So, the classic example that we have in our question business we developed, or the equestrian team developed the world's first as far as we can tell, we can find one anywhere else. Well first PFC free course rogue which has gone brilliantly. And there was nothing on the market before who knew that the market would react to that nobody knew because nobody put anything out. So, support those things, you know, and we're going to do phase two, which is going to be made PFC free and made out of recycled plastic bottles. So, support that, you know, if you and it's again, it’s that poor situation isn't going to buy horserace pause. Is there a sustainable alternative? There is. I'm going to support that because that's, that's where change comes from. And it's the same way we've got a really good initiative that's just the trials just come to an end and we're going to continue but it's in partnership with Patagonia and we have been removing the poly bags from their products before they go to their customers and making sure that they're recycled. And that's means that our customers not only get the plastic free packaging, we put it in, but the products the brand's products That goes into that packaging that plastic is removed also. And so again, support that, you know, if you see these things and, in any business, just pause and think. Yeah, that's that. I need to support that with my hard-earned money basically. Yeah.
Will Richardson - 43:20
Cheers, Adam, thank you so much for today. Thank you for being on the podcast. And really, really useful. And really, really interesting. I know that one fan is interesting, as I did. So, thank you. Thank you so much for that.
Adam Hall - 43:33
Brilliant, thanks for having me. Yeah, really appreciate it. And thanks so much for Green Element and support with our carbon reporting software, then compare your footprint. And also, thanks so much for Green Element for supporting our charity partners protect our winters and actually supporting the pledge which will come out in September as well. So, some, it just goes to show that you know, you're trying to work in your field to do good. You are actually physically doing good as well by supporting charities and so on. So, yeah, thank you so much.
Will Richardson - 44:09
No worries, it's brilliant. It's brilliant. We've learnt loads. Thank you. Thank you.
Today we've got Adam Hall from internet fusion on the podcast. As a caveat, I've actually known Adam for a few years now, and have gotten to know Him through a variety of means as chairman of British passports Association, and also as through green elements and our network and we're actually working for them on their carbon reporting as well. But I think it just dawned on us that actually they are doing so much good. And they are such an amazing company. Why aren't we talking to them on our podcast? So here we are, but better late than ever. But um, yeah. I hope you enjoyed. It was a brilliant podcast. Thank you.
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Hi! I'm Will Richardson. I'm the host of the Sustainability Business Podcast and the founder of Green Element. With over 20 years of experience, my team and I can truly help your business become more sustainable and environmentally friendly. Book a free consultation to have a chat about how your organisation can embrace the change towards sustainability.