Bain & Company is offering The Further Academy Programme, an accelerated and specialised, post-graduate-level global ESG training programme to upskill all its consultants across the firm worldwide. This will be the largest move of its kind within the top tier management consulting sector.

The Middle East office hosted 5 training sessions, with consultants from across all 3 offices being trained by professors from HEC Paris. The full day, in person training was repeated across each batch of consultants for a week, covering the fundamentals of sustainability.

Intense focus

The upskilling initiative, already under way and being rapidly rolled out in all the firm’s global regions, is a key element of Bain & Company’s continuing, intense focus on supporting sustainable transitions to drive positive impact for all its clients. It supports the firm’s aim to integrate ESG into 100% of client work, reflecting the global imperative for companies across sectors to build sustainability and ESG into the fabric of their businesses now, to accelerate the energy transition, transform food systems, and advance diversity and equity.

The Further Academy programme will see all of Bain’s consultants and advisors, from entry-level new joiners to senior partners, receive the training from world class universities and business schools, including Imperial College Business School (London), Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), HEC Paris, Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management, and Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands (TU Delft) and Melbourne Business School’s Centre for Sustainability and Business, Melbourne, Australia.

Embedding ESG

The upskilling is part of Bain’s continuing commitment to embed ESG into everything it does, both within its client work and in its own internal and external operations. It will equip each consultant to advise on ESG issues within their areas of expertise, ensure that an understanding of ESG risks and opportunities is at the heart of every client brief – and deliver on Bain’s own, ambitious sustainable development goals.

Forty hours post-graduate-level training modules will be provided to each consultant, delivered primarily in live sessions with some hybrid elements, with the partner business schools developing regionally tailored curricula. Modules include climate change, the energy transition, sustainable development, business transformation, circularity and value chains, sustainable and equitable food systems, social justice, and diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI).

For DEI, this expanded programme builds on extensive training already delivered to thousands of Bain consultants this year. In addition, the firm is already actively developing the next phase of the ESG upskilling drive to ensure continuing, relevant training across teams and regions, including for new joiners in the future.

Deeper understanding

Discussing the programme, François Faelli, global managing partner for ESG at Bain & Company, said: “Reaching net zero on a global scale requires a tremendous investment in ESG skills. The next generation of business leaders must intuitively understand how to balance financial and non-financial objectives. I am proud to say that we will very shortly have succeeded in delivering this training for thousands of our advisors who will help steer our clients towards a more sustainable future.

Eric Guraieb, Partner at Bain & Company, Middle East added: “Training all consultants internationally from top universities has helped them acquire a deeper understanding of the fundamentals across broad range of sustainability issues from climate change to circular supply chains. The ESG upskilling initiative has been a top priority at Bain & Company as we focus on advising our clients on their sustainability journeys."

Faelli continued: “A foundational knowledge of climate science and social value is vital to understanding almost any modern business challenge. As purpose becomes more important as a driver of strategy, bridging the gap between academic institutions and business through initiatives like this is crucial. With the implementation of this program across all areas of our business, consultants will be empowered to work alongside clients to co-create the future and generate lasting impact.”

Bain’s strong sustainability

Bain & Company, which has been carbon neutral since 2011, announced in April its commitment to science-based target emissions reductions, as well as the pledge to be net carbon negative in every year going forward.

This will see Bain & Company remove more than 100% of its scope 1, 2 and 3 carbon emissions by supporting projects that extract carbon from the atmosphere.

Bain & Company launched its Sustainability and Responsibility Practice over ten years ago and has seen the area grow by more than 65% per annum over the past five years, with more than 950 sustainability projects undertaken by its consulting teams during this period, including more than 800 which touched on climate transition cases.

The Further Academy builds on the firm’s extensive previous track record of ESG training. Previous initiatives include Further SM Learning, a series of podcasts and webinars now in its second year, along with ongoing curation of the latest insights shared through Bain’s award-winning knowledge management platform.

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