18: On Aon’s ESG Focus with Leslie Follmer


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Organizations around the world are increasingly focusing on the impact of environmental, social and governance issues, commonly called ESG. At its core, ESG is all about risk. From climate change and supply chain to reputation and brand, ESG topics are central to executive and board-level discussions at every firm. Historically, ESG was a lens through which socially conscious investors could evaluate investment opportunities. Today, more and more firms are considering environmental, social and governance risks, opportunities, impact and stakeholders in their daily operations. In this episode of “On Aon,” host Andrea O’Leary, Chief People Officer for Enterprise Clients and Innovation, is joined by Aon’s Head of Investor Relations and ESG Leslie Follmer for a discussion about Aon’s approach to ESG, as well as how broader ESG trends are shaping Aon’s work with clients, counseling better decisions.

  • Leslie’s professional inspiration comes from the people she interacts with daily. [:58]
  • Defining ESG and its importance and impact at Aon. [2:46]
  • Aon’s current firm-wide strategies regarding environmental, social and corporate governance. [6:05]
  • Aon’s commitment to net-zero emissions by 2030 is a keystone of our environmental efforts, but how exactly are we working to achieve it? [9:25]
  • The success of the social aspect of Aon’s ESG efforts can be seen through the lens of our clients, our culture and our investors. [11:03]
  • Details regarding Aon’s corporate governance efforts. [12:52]
  • How exactly ESG fits in as one of the five pillars of the Global Inclusive Leadership Council. [14:11]
  • Leslie’s main aims in her role leading ESG at Aon. [16:58]
  • What insider tip would Leslie offer to anyone who is looking to join Aon? [19:22]

Additional Resources:

Aon’s website

Aon’s 2020 Impact Report

ESG intersects with our client work and company culture. For continued listening, check out our past episodes on our climate commitment (ep. 1), our inclusion and diversity efforts (4), climate and catastrophic events (10), and our apprenticeship program (16).

Global Special Report: Helping Organizations Chart a Course to The New Better


“ESG is ultimately about risk.” — Leslie Follmer

“If you’re really thinking about ESG in the right way, it really impacts what your company is doing across your strategy.” — Leslie Follmer

“If you take care of your people, they take care of your clients, and that takes care of your business.” — Leslie Follmer

“The ESG commitment is not just about what we’re saying, it’s about what we’re doing.” — Leslie Follmer