Ten Practices To Adopt And Ensure A Greener Business
Customers in the 21st conscientious. Not only do they consider the price of the product, but they also focus on sustainability and environmentally-friendly business practices. Millennials and Generation Z are among the most influential consumer groups, and they are voting with their dollar. According to a survey from Sendle, most consumers are buying more sustainable products. Furthermore, people are 58 percent more likely to purchase green/eco-friendly products.
But, evolving consumer habits are not the only reason corporations should go green. Sustainable businesses are more productive. They are also efficient because they plan how to use their resources. And people are more willing to work in green companies. Several laws also require businesses to switch to sustainable resources and materials.
So, businesses are trying to become more sustainable. For example, Procter & Gamble has several green initiatives that focus on efficient water usage, waste treatment, CO2 emissions, and packaging. Amazon has also added a few renewable energy farms to reduce waste and pollution. From manufacturers to entrepreneurs, every business owner is trying to go green. They are using cutting-edge technology to reduce industrial pollution and increase efficiency. The education sector is also helping future business owners go green. Since 2010, sustainable development in business management started to gain traction. Several educational platforms have also added business sustainability modules to their bachelor in business administration online programs. But, enrolling in sustainable development courses to go green is merely one option to encourage eco-friendly business practices at an introductory level. Here are ten easy ways you can make your business green.
1. Begin with an energy audit: Business owners have to start by identifying problem areas to increase their efficiency. Therefore an energy audit is an excellent first step. Not only does it improve sustainability, but it also reduces costs and increases efficiency. It can also reduce your carbon footprint and improve your image within the industry. You can audit your company yourself or hire an energy auditor for a professional energy assessment. Ask your local government energy office to recommend a professional.
2. Prioritize remote work: There is one thing businesses and companies learned during the pandemic- the benefits of working from home. According to flexjobs.com, remote work improves economic growth and reduces inequalities. Remote work also reduces carbon emissions as workers do not have to commute. With fewer cars on the road, there will be a significant difference in smog levels and air quality. Furthermore, working from home improves employee satisfaction and productivity. It can also reduce office operation costs for business owners.
3. Reduce convenience addiction: According to the EPA, the average American produces 4.40 pounds of waste daily. By introducing green habits to your employees, you can decrease the environmental footprint. Implement a recycling program within your office to decrease waste. Encourage your employees to bring reusable water bottles and cups to reduce plastic use. You can also switch to hand dryers instead of paper towels for a paperless office. Offer rewards to the most environmentally friendly employees to encourage green habits.
4. Always prefer pre-loved finds: Using second-hand products is another way to support the environment. You do not have to go all out when redecorating your office. Since manufacturing furniture requires energy and natural resources, you can increase sustainability by choosing antiques. Not only are used products easier on the pocket, but they are also environmentally friendly.
5. Go digital: Becoming a paperless office means reducing costs, paper consumption, and improving efficiency. In a paperless environment, you do not have to worry about filing documents or printing out pages and filing them in. You can also store your documents digitally for quick retrieval. Some companies have to pay for extra warehouses because they have too much paperwork for one location. By going paperless, you can free up space and reduce costs. Going paperless is also beneficial for the environment. According to Kyocera, the average company processes more than ten thousand paper sheaves per annum. Upload everything on the cloud to make it easily accessible and paperless.
6. Recycle electronics: Electronic waste is the fastest-growing source of waste in the world. There were 54 million metric tons of e-waste in 2019. Instead of tossing your old equipment into landfills, donate them to local schools or charities. You can also earn some money by selling your electronics. Several companies auction old electronics when shifting operations online and automating to get some money and reduce their e-waste.
7. Do business with green vendors: Several firms offer sustainable products. You can support them by buying their products and encouraging your employees to do the same. However, do your research before you decide on a company. Think about whether their corporate image aligns with your firm and research their sustainability efforts. You can also support local businesses by partnering with them.
8. Conserve energy: It might be old school, but the “lights off” policy works. It impacts your conservation strategy and your electric bill. Try to introduce natural light to your offices to reduce electricity consumption. You can also use AI to shut off lights when they are not needed. Encourage your employees to turn off extra lights and shut off their computers at the end of the workday.
9. Make sustainability a part of your culture: Companies must understand that real change needs commitment from all branches. Therefore, it is not enough to introduce a “green program” and call it a day. You must prioritize sustainability and change policies and procedures. Talk to your shareholders about the importance of sustainability and motivate them to make the right decisions.
10. Do what works best: Every strategy does not work for each firm. Therefore, it is necessary to consider what works for you. Reach out to other companies to learn how they are going green. Identify what other companies within your state and sector are doing to implement the best practices.
With the threat of climate change and global warming looming, it is time to focus on sustainability. Every business has its part to play in the fight against environmental crises. Begin by monitoring your carbon footprint and take the necessary steps to reduce it. In the long run, green business practices will help you save the planet and make more customers and money along the way.