Green.org sat down with Mary Olson, Co-Founder at Brand Intelligence, to learn about her experience helping businesses become more sustainable, her transition to fintech, and eight ways the average person can live more sustainably.
Tell us a little bit about you and your background:
After years of framing and designing transformational digital businesses and brands, we pivoted the company to blockchain and FinTech to focus on innovating financial technologies based on MIT’S FinTech: Future Commerce certification course. The FinTech pivot dovetailed our long-term focus on sustainability when the UN shifted from MDGs to SDGs.
One of our clients leads the sustainability drive in the ‘chemistry for good’ and global impact responsibility. We are instrumental in designing and communicating the SDG programs associated with the brand. We helped scores of other visionary entrepreneurs, local governments, highly motivated business development teams, and remarkable individuals re-strategize value propositions and incorporate sustainability to their business models.
The FinTechs I worked with in 2016-2019 primarily focused on revenue growth only, with practically zero commitment to sustainability. Our disappointment in the market segment caused us to shift into high gear and engage startups and scale-ups that empower the solar education, real estate impact/responsible investing, and AI solutions for dentists to transform their dental practices. We have made a hard-headed pragmatic commitment to heroic entrepreneurs and community leaders who power sustainability to achieve far-reaching results.
Sustainability is the top priority of my business as I pivot one more time—this time, I plan to establish innovations in sustainability business branding and design. I am studying the Circular Economy and Sustainability Strategies Program at the University of Cambridge Judge Business School Executive Education for the remainder of 2022.
What is a fun fact about you?
I am married to an extraordinary artist and live with creative thinking every day.
Why do you think climate change and sustainability is such an important topic today?
These are the critical issues for today’s leaders and influencers. The survival of humanity and the planet is at stake.
What do you envision your industry looking like 10 years from now?
Ten years is an eternity, considering the chasm between today’s anti-climate politics and apathetic social culture here in the States and the heroic sustainability models created by responsible innovators. As we all know, the current projections for Climate in 2030+ inclde higher levels of extreme heat, more acidic and warming oceans, higher sea levels, and enormous damages due to extreme storms, mainly due to greenhouse gas pollution and lack of aggressive climate change policies.
As a business and brand design strategist, my sphere of influence affects a handful of uniquely responsible tech innovators and their potential large markets. Our work produces rapid scale-ups with broad market touchpoints to help mitigate the planet’s powerful destruction throughout the next ten years. Our clients are fostering breakthrough markets and ventures that are game changers, but it is a fight against the clock. We all know that it is only a matter of time before the irreversible tipping point occurs, and the risk is intensifying daily.
Eight Ways The Average Person Can Live More Sustainably
Here are a few initial ideas for an average person to become a conscious consumer and take action:
- Grow actual knowledge and recognize misinformation.
- Lower your carbon footprint and support the reduction of local community emissions. (Hudson County Economic Development Corporation’s climate recovery program for small businesses in New Jersey.)
- Seek training and careers in solar. (Eferon Solar School is a brilliant solution.)
- Explore other types of jobs in climate companies, and take Climate 101s.
- Press politicians in your state to engage much further in sustainability solutions.
- Select and join communities geared to make a difference.
- Make responsible real estate investments and diversify your portfolio. (I recommend REICROWD.io)