Steve Rochlin, CEO and founder of Impact ROI, participated in a video interview in conjunction with Nareit’s REITworks: 2022 Conference in La Quinta, California, on Sept. 12-13.
Rochlin said that Impact ROI has found that companies are understanding the business case around ESG more and more, and seeing that good ESG practices create value for both bottom and top line growth.
“Companies that do ESG well outperform their competitors in the stock market by as much as 6%, boost revenue from sales by as much as 20%, and reduce employee turnover by as much as half,” he said, adding that investors are demanding extensive and detailed ESG disclosures and performance as well.
Turning to steps that REITs can take to strengthen their ESG performance, Rochlin said an ESG materiality assessment can help companies identify their strategic priorities.
“[Also] understanding that the real estate business has profound impacts…in terms of the carbon and climate footprint,” he said. “But it also has the potential to be a driver of wider community and economic development that’s inclusive, that supports diversity, and really makes communities thrive.”
Rochlin added that workers new to the ESG discipline should learn as much as they can about business and finance.
“Because there’s a trade-off to make in terms of the capital expenditure and the operating expenditure,” he said. “The trick for being effective as a professional is understanding how to balance those trade-offs.”