Who would have guessed that the recent talk about climate action would make me reflect on my years playing football? Let me tell you why.
Growing up, playing football was my passion. Over the years my coaches thought they were teaching me athletic skills. But in reality, they were teaching me other skills as well. I didn’t make the connection at the time.
What else did I learn while I was playing football?
Teamwork. I learned the different responsibilities of each member and how to work in a team.
Presence. They taught me how to read plays and to be able to react to different situations.
Self discipline. My job was to do a specific task. By doing so, I helped the other team members do their jobs more effectively.
Learning these skills gave us all a better chance of winning each game so we could go to the championship.
The athletic skills? I still keep active, however my football playing days only consist now of cheering for my beloved Tiger Cats. (By the way, this year looks fantastic!)
As for those other skills my football coaches taught? They form the basis for my work every single day. I now coach energy management to teams of employees throughout organizations across North America.
Many people think that energy management consists of single and independent actions such as doing energy audits, installing or retrofitting new technologies or just purchasing commodities once a year. They don’t make the connection that successful energy management is much more. When done correctly, energy management teaches how to engage employee teams, to use energy strategically and to exploit energy opportunities throughout the organization.
So how did climate action remind me of football?
Many people have not yet made the connection that energy is directly related to climate. When people reduce their energy use, do they realize they also reduce their impact on the environment? Not everyone does.
Reducing energy use helps the bottom line. But reducing the burning of fossil fuels like gasoline, diesel, coal and natural gas also reduces the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that are contributing to global warming. When people learn the skills of energy management, often without knowing it, they also learn the skills of effective climate action.
This insight has prompted our 360 Energy management team to more intentionally help our customers make these connections. Not only do we help companies improve their bottom line, we help them improve their environmental impact as well. Therefore, we have developed the capacity to track and report on GHG emissions reductions for our customers from the energy reductions and cost savings they have achieved.
You will see us making these connections in some of the articles in this edition of “The 360”. We are also planning to show the connection to GHG emissions reductions in our regular energy reports to customers.
We want our customers to know they are already part of the solution. We want them to make the connection, that their actions to save money by reducing energy use, also put them on a pathway to environmental sustainability.
Learning energy management skills has unanticipated benefits – just like learning the skills of playing football. And just like in football, those energy management skills give our planet a better chance of winning the global climate challenge it needs to win.