Stakeholder communication and dialogue
Porsche’s business activities have an impact on the interests of many people across the world. The company is particularly concerned with conducting and consistently building on a process of proactive exchange with its stakeholders. For Porsche, an open and transparent exchange of information and opinions lays the foundation for mutual understanding and social acceptance. With its holistic approach to stakeholder management, Porsche aims to systematically ascertain the expectations of individual stakeholders and use this feedback for critical reflection on strategic planning processes. This procedure is divided into internal and external dialogue depending on the target group in question.
External stakeholder dialogue
An exchange that is beneficial for all sides must be based on trust. This is the core value of any long-term relationship between Porsche and its external dialogue partners. Credible exchange with the stakeholders must be geared towards the long term and be nurtured on an ongoing basis. Porsche considers it important for people to talk to one another, not over one another, so that they can understand other perspectives, break down barriers and develop long-term partnerships. This takes place via a diverse range of communication channels and dialogue formats.
The most important sources of information for thought leaders, decision makers and customers include the Porsche magazine Christophorus, which is published in 13 languages around the world, the online newsroom with its Twitter and Instagram channels, the Web-based TV channel 9:11 Magazin and the company website. The community newspaper targa – Nachrichten für die Nachbarn, which was launched in 2015, keeps local residents who live in proximity to Porsche’s sites up to date with the latest news. Information letters are also used to keep neighbours abreast of issues such as plans for future construction work.
Porsche also seeks to address stakeholders personally through multi-stakeholder events such as the regular dialogue summits held at the company sites. Since 2016, this has given local residents the chance to raise specific questions directly with the experts. During the reporting year, the company used an event held at its Zuffenhausen site in Stuttgart to update its neighbours on the status of the construction work taking place there. Around 300 members of the public took up this opportunity to learn about the project, ask questions, make suggestions or express their opinions.
Porsche highly values direct feedback from its interest groups and views one-to-one talks as an effective tool for gaining fresh inspiration. Through a dedicated email address (email@example.com), the sports car manufacturer offers stakeholders a way of contacting the responsible department directly.
The stakeholder survey is carried out every two years as part of a systematic process to learn about groups’ views and expectations in relation to the issue of sustainability. The issues identified in the online survey provide the basis for this sustainability report and for sustainability aspects which are closely linked to other aspects of the corporate strategy.
Cooperating in networks and engaging in sustainability initiatives and working groups also form part of Porsche’s stakeholder dialogue as this works to drive forward economic, ecological and social issues. Porsche participates in a wide variety of specialist bodies – for example, the sports car manufacturer is a founder member of the Bündnis für Luftreinhaltung clean air alliance, a member of the Urban Mobility Platform and an active participant in the industry dialogue on the German national action plan for business and human rights. It has also been a member of the German Environmental Management Association (B.A.U.M.) since 2016. In 2017, the company joined the German Business Ethics Network (DNWE) and became a signatory to the state of Baden-Württemberg’s WIN! charter for sustainable business, marking its commitment to entrepreneurial responsibility. Since 2018, Porsche has also been one of the cooperation partners involved in the nachhaltig.digital competence platform. The aim of the joint project of B.A.U.M. and the German Federal Environmental Foundation (DBU) is to use digitalisation as a tool for future-proof sustainable development.
Another approach involves engaging in dialogue as part of activities within economic and political associations. This enables the company to represent its interests and those of its employees while also contributing relevant expertise. All company activities in this area abide by the principles of openness, transparency and responsibility as well as the currently applicable statutory provisions. It goes without saying that Porsche remains neutral in its dealings with political parties and interest groups. The following list features a selection of associations and groups of which Porsche is a member:
– German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA)
– The Industry Association of Baden-Württemberg (LVI)
– Südwestmetall (Baden-Württemberg employers’ association for the metal and electrical industry)
– Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Stuttgart Region (IHK)
– Society for the Advancement of the Kiel Institute for the World Economy
– American Chamber of Commerce in Germany (AmCham Germany)
Internal stakeholder dialogue
Centrally coordinated, open and transparent internal dialogue is an essential component of Porsche’s corporate culture. Employees have a wide range of opportunities to raise their own concerns and use direct interaction channels to keep themselves informed about sustainability-related topics. Potential sources of information include the local site newsletters and the in-house TV channel, while the intranet also provides up-to-the-minute news. In addition, an entire edition of the Carrera employee magazine published during the reporting year was dedicated to current sustainability topics at Porsche. Regular works and departmental meetings, employee information events and specific topic and innovation weeks also form part of the diverse programme of internal communications.