Executive Voices in Sustainability 2017:

Executive Voices in Sustainability: Chris Roughton


What brought you to Yale?

As with any decision we make as business leaders, there were several factors that weighed into my decision to come to Yale. The aspect that sealed the deal for me though was SOM’s focus on building leaders for business and society, a philosophy that aligns very well with my own leadership ethos.

During the information session I attended in 2014, I remember David Bach referencing how this degree with a focus in Sustainability is the degree that MBAs from all other schools will be getting in the future. It is impossible to make the best management decisions, now and going forward, without being well versed in sustainability topics. I see this degree giving me a strategic advantage in my career where I know it will help me lead organizations to be even better stewards of their communities, environment, and shareholders.

How have you impacted sustainable practices in your career?

The short answer to this question is “not as much as I would have liked.” That being said, as a manufacturing operations leader I have helped lead and execute projects in waste and packaging reduction, as well as overall energy savings. What Yale SOM is helping to prepare me for is how to make the argument for sustainability investments that do not always affect the financial bottom line, but do impact the social or environmental ones.

What challenges do you see for sustainability in your industry?

Working for a company that is a key supplier of consumable products for laboratory research, I see a future where our customers will begin demanding more shared responsibility for the landfill impact of our pipette tips and other plastics that are just thrown away after use. Innovation will be critical to delivering solutions that minimize costs for both the company and our customers, as well as lessening the impact of our activities on the environment.

Tell us one thing about yourself that might surprise your classmates.

I made 13 moves across 8 states all before the age of 26.

Current Position

Position: Director, Manufacturing, Planning, & Warehousing
Duration: One Year (6.5 years total with company)
Responsibility: I manage the teams responsible for manufacturing operations planning, our internal machine shop, and the raw materials warehouse.

Contact Information

Email: chris.roughton@yale.edu
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/chrisroughton
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/chrisroughton
Snapchat User: chris.roughton

This is part of a series of profiles featuring students in the Yale MBA for Executives program who have a focus on sustainability.