Letter to stakeholders
"Give me eight hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first six sharpening the axe."
This quote by Abraham Lincoln can be used effectively to describe the stage that SEA is going through in pursuit of the goal of increasingly integrating its sustainability strategy into its business management.
Being able to incorporate stakeholder expectations into strategy and business management is an ability that is increasingly valued by financial market players. They are aware of the link between this ability and the generation of greater and more durable corporate value.
Under ESG lens of investors
Our company experienced how the attention to ESG issues by international investors has been growing. For two years now, it has been subjected to a thorough assessment, by mandate of an indirect shareholder, to assess our capability to address ESG issues, and the result was very positive.
This highlighted the work we have been doing for years to adopt a model of "integrated governance". With this, we aim to progressively incorporate socio-environmental sustainability issues into the vision, strategic options, business plans, budgets and managerial performance measurement systems, to ensure that the company's ability to create value over the long term takes into account all the variables that affect it.
Dissemination of inclusive approach
2016 was a year devoted heavily to "sharpening the axe" of sustainable and coordinated growth of our airports and local systems.
Our progress on this front is based not so much on a succession of linked initiatives to give tone and volume to a generic material level, but by adopting a series of design patterns through which we try to give methodological substance and organic application to our fundamental vision.
This approach has been translated into the development of our infrastructure capital, and in design and implementation of an open dialogue process with local stakeholders on 2030 Master Plan guidelines for Malpensa airport. We anticipated and applied voluntarily the public debate procedure required when implementing a new infrastructure, introduced by the new Procurement Code.
In terms of vision and organizational culture, the launch of the new system of corporate values (built through extensive internal involvement) was the precondition for starting a change management project geared to the adoption of leadership styles inspired by those very values. These styles generate investments in soft skills, such as a cross-sectional approach to decision-making, ability to work in groups, openness to innovation, and cultivating professional excellence.
Attention to growth and engagement of human capital has been applied by organically and structurally deploying a process for listening to people about the key issues of quality of work and organizational wellbeing. We also adopted an advanced model of family and work reconciliation management, which won us a Family Audit Certification. Based on this model and with the help of its people's essential contribution, SEA has defined a three-year plan of organizational efforts to make our way of working more flexible, inclusive and smart.
Our corporate citizenship model, identified primarily, but not only, in the "Social Challenge" initiative, gained in 2016 an important confirmation of its validity and ability to involve non-profit active actors in airport surroundings. Between 2015 and 2016, our colleagues and co-workers presented or sponsored more than 200 projects of non-profit associations, 13 of which received a contribution of 10,000 Euro each , thanks to a meritocratic evaluation mechanism managed with the participation of the whole corporate community.
Excellence in processes and accountability
We must not forget the important contribution, both in terms of optimization of management processes and as a cultural paradigm, generated by implementation of certified management systems that drive us daily to pursue services of incremental quality in the field of passenger services, worker safety and environmental protection.
Finally, we are also strengthening and raising our capacity for accountability through an Observatory on the economic footprint generated by our airports, created in partnership with University of Castellanza.
The progressive refinement of the analysis of directly and indirectly generated effects by the activity of our airports benefiting the socioeconomic system of the respective catchment areas provides us a more complete and effective way to depict the overall value we generate. At the same time, it urges us to consider the development paths of our airport system in a way that is increasingly integrated with peculiarities and ambitions of the productive and social fabric. We put ourselves at its service as a strategic infrastructure of connection with global market.
Integrating business and sustainability
The growth path that we have outlined for the coming years in the 2016-2021 Business Plan refers to four strategic goals: traffic development, investment in upgrading of our infrastructure capital, expansion of non-aviation business, and optimization of processes in terms of efficiency.
The fact that ESG issues represent an important quality and identity feature of this strategic plan is reflected in the narrative structure of 2016 Sustainability Report. Traditional approach where document's topics were related to specific stakeholders (environment, personnel, passengers, suppliers, etc.) has been replaced by an approach centred on four drivers of our strategic plan, whose sustainability variables represent an expression to be monitored, on which to invest in order to avoid jeopardizing or delaying the achievement of business targets.
This is a first sign of the concrete will to start working on monitoring all our company's areas of short and long-term value creation.