Further Academy Programme
Bain & Company is a top-tier global strategic management consulting firm providing integrated expertise in business and digital innovation to organisations around the world. To better serve its clients in achieving critical ESG goals, and to realise the company’s vision of integrating sustainability into the fabric of business, Bain set an ambitious mandate: to embed sustainable development and ESG expertise into all client work and all of its own internal and external procedures in pursuit of the firm’s own, ambitious sustainable development goals. To do this, every Bain consultant would need a strong foundational understanding of ESG, science and social value to be able to advise clients on ESG issues, risks and opportunities – alongside the specialized ESG advice provided to the firm’s clients by the expert consulting team from its Sustainability and Responsibility practice. In turn, Bain’s goals would mean working with learning partners, such as Imperial, with the expertise and resources to accelerate the acquisition of ESG knowledge at scale.
A Global Programme Built on Collaboration and Expertise
Bain wanted to provide a world-class learning experience for all of its 13,000+ consultants worldwide; a learning experience that would give them mastery of the critical concepts and the language of ESG, climate science and the transition to a sustainable circular economy. To achieve this, Bain partnered with 12 world-leading providers of business education, including Imperial College Business School in the UK and MIT Sloan in the US, to co-create and deliver an immersive, blended virtual and face-to-face programme: the Further Academy Programme.
For the UK training, four virtual knowledge sessions led by Imperial faculty challenged participants to explore the big picture in ESG, the megatrends and the science-backed projections, the technologies and transitions in low carbon and the challenges ahead in making the economic shifts necessary to fortify sustainable business practices. Learning culminated in a fully immersive day on campus at Imperial College Business School, interacting with peers and faculty, thought leaders and founders of some of the most compelling startups working in sustainability in the UK today.
Two of the core objectives of the programme focused on knowledge and understanding: building participants’ familiarity and comfort with the latest thinking on sustainability and ESG, while expanding their understanding of the key challenges—and opportunities— ahead, so they feel empowered to consult and advise on these themes with confidence and clarity. The programme sought to give Bain employees a safe place to experiment with new ideas, and to inspire them to bring a compelling and commercial ESG lens to their work with clients going forward.
The Further Academy Programme is the largest of its kind in the consulting sector, with Bain’s entire workforce exposed to world-class training in climate science, sustainability and the broader ESG agenda from top global universities: this investment by Bain is the start of an organisation-wide acceleration of knowledge and skills among our consultants that will help us bring ESG into the core of what we offer. Working in partnership with Imperial College Business School’s Executive Education team has given our UK-based consultants direct exposure to Imperial’s multi-disciplinary experts in science and business, as well as drawing input from the broader Imperial ecosystem. The programme was immeasurably enriched by input from expert speakers from Imperial’s Grantham Institute; and perspectives broadened by a chance to interact with next-generation entrepreneurs—Imperial alumni—who are pushing the boundaries in the ESG space.
Imperial College Business School Executive Education delivered a transformational learning experience for our people that will continue challenging them to see the bigger picture as we support efforts to reach net zero, to accelerate the energy transition, and advance diversity and inclusion globally.
Harry Morrison, Partner, Bain & Co.