Just because you are a small business doesn’t mean your environmental impact is insignificant. With more than 31 million small businesses in the United States alone, the waste produced by each establishment can add up pretty easily and quickly. In the last couple of years, we have seen consumers realize the importance of sustainability and environmental awareness in a person’s daily life. Choosing to transition to a more environmentally sustainable workplace can help your company stay relevant in today’s evolving markets.
Learn how to make small businesses environmentally sustainable by reading the tips prepared for you below.
Why Should Small Businesses Prioritize Sustainability?
Justifying sustainability in business is easy: through it, you can increase your profits and simultaneously reduce your company’s environmental impact. Companies like Ikea, Tesla, and Nike are making billions of dollars each year simply by promoting and practicing sustainability. Now’s the time for you to leverage environmentally-friendly practices to scale your small business and increase your bottom line.
Benefits of Sustainability for Small Businesses
Besides the obvious positive environmental effects, sustainability comes with a myriad of other advantages for businesses. Here are just some of the most common benefits:
Lower Utility Costs
Small business owners spend an average of $2.14 on utilities per square foot of their office space. By monitoring which appliances are consuming the most energy, you can carefully plan your usage and reduce your monthly expenses.
Boost Stakeholder Loyalty
Adopting a sustainability practice can improve your relationship with Earth-conscious stakeholders. It can encourage them to keep working with your brand. It may also invite more people to use your services or products.
Encourage Other Small Businesses to Do the Same
Perhaps you are trying to reduce your company’s financed emissions by transitioning to a more sustainable work setup. Sharing your story and experience can encourage other small businesses to follow suit. As result, you could have an even bigger positive impact on society and the environment.
Tips to Make Small Businesses Environmentally Sustainable
Ready to take the first step toward sustainability? Transitioning from a traditional business model to one that’s sustainable is not easy. Use these tips to improve your experience:
Do Your Research
Learning more about sustainability is the first thing you need to do if you are planning to integrate the practice into your business. After all, sustainability is more than simply removing all plastic from your workplace and making sure to turn the faucet off after you wash. Find time to learn more about the theories and technicalities of a sustainable business. Attend seminars and workshops that teach you techniques on how to improve your project planning and successfully create a more sustainable business environment.
Choose Sustainable Products
You need to be proactive about the companies and brands that you choose to work with. This means choosing suppliers that provide ethically sourced products with eco-friendly packaging and delivery models. For instance, if you are running low on printing paper in the office, instead of going to Best Buy for the paper, you could look for a provider that offers paper made from post- or pre-consumer waste. This can significantly reduce your company’s consumption and help lessen environmental waste.
Repurpose Old Office Furniture
Most people disregard how plastic impacts the environment. However, it is not something that you should turn your back to. Studies show that around 400 million tonnes of plastic waste are produced every year. These plastics contaminate water supplies, food supplies, and even planting fields. So, instead of tossing that old and beaten office chair into a landfill, consider repurposing it. You can find plenty of ideas online on how to upcycle an office chair or any other old furniture. It only takes a little research and some elbow grease.
Consider Green Web Hosting
Every small business needs a website where clients can easily access information and services from. If you are planning to launch a company website, consider working with a web hosting company that offers green hosting. GreenGeeks and A2 Hosting are just a couple of popular green hosting providers on the market today.
Encourage Green Transportation
The United States has over 276 million registered vehicles belonging to 91% of households. Cars are major contributors to air pollution and climate change. Unfortunately, employees need to get to the office one way or another. Encouraging the use of green transportation is a great way to offset your small business’ carbon emissions. Buses, trains, and carpools are just a few examples of green transportation options that employees can use. Small business owners can offer workers compensation or incentives to push them to use more environmentally friendly transportation.
Advocating for sustainability is a great way for a small business to boost company profits and reduce negative environmental effects. Nevertheless, making this switch can feel intimidating and overwhelming. The right tips and methodologies can make the process go more smoothly. Consider the tips we have shared above and find time to apply them to your business.
Finally, if you need us, we are always ready to help!
For more sustainability tips, visit our page on sustainable business growth and increase.
* The IMEDD assists businesses in their market research & sustainability commitments and communicate on their initiatives.
Article written by Kat Sarmiento.
Kat writes articles with the hopes of reaching out to more people. Her writing is focused on lifestyle, science, and smart hacks, that will definitely be useful to readers.