How to make your business more eco-friendly

eco business

Businesses nowadays are shifting their focus from purely profit-driven motivations to an environmentally responsible approach to overall activity.

Stakeholders at all levels, including customers, suppliers, owners and managers are more deeply invested than ever before. Customers expect the businesses they frequent to be deeply committed to earth-friendly causes, and to behave as responsible operators in every sense of the word. Environmentally-friendly operations have taken center-stage, and rightly so.

Eco-friendly businesses have an innate advantage over their competitors since they are doing something beyond serving their self-interests. By placing the well-being of the environment at the forefront, businesses stand out from the competition.

Analysis of the data speaks volumes; businesses which have adopted an eco-friendly perspective tend to enjoy a much-improved bottom line in the long-run since they have a sustainable advantage over their competitors.

While it is certainly an ambitious undertaking, it is entirely possible to embrace eco-friendly operations. Businesses can dramatically reduce their carbon footprint by following the sage advice of industry-leading authorities.

A classic case of wanton waste is the use of paper in offices. Fortunately, the entire business world has quickly moved away from consumption of a seemingly insatiable appetite for paper in favor of digital alternatives including emails, digital quotes, digital invoices, digital work orders, and digital signatures.

The latter is particularly important in that it serves as a legally-binding signature for contractual purposes. It doesn’t require paper documents to be printed, signed and then transmitted accordingly. These cost-savings are dramatic.

Many novel techniques can be employed in the pursuit of going green, including the following:

A Focus on Recycled Material

At a micro-level, recycling has many inherent benefits. For starters, businesses and their team members can engage in recycling of plastics, papers, electronics, hardware, and software to ensure that maximum benefit is derived from waste products. Investing in eco-friendly packaging and equipment which can be customisable like personalized paper coasters, are a great start at tackling the massive waste businesses produce. There are many organizations which accept donations of redundant, old, used, or dysfunctional electronic equipment, and proceeds go towards assisting those in need. Global electronic waste production (smart TVs, iPods, iPads, computers, laptops, tablets, phablets) topped out at 49.8 million metric tons in 2018, many of these products ending up in landfills, and incinerators where harmful gases and byproducts are released into the environment.

Remote Worker Environment

Big companies are particularly culpable when they require employees to commute long distances, or daily to work and back. Remote workers are just as productive, if not more productive for companies, then in-office workers.

Plus, worker satisfaction levels are significantly enhanced when all or some of the work activity can be performed remotely. Not only does this reduce a company’s overall expenses (less cubicles, less office space, less insurance for in-office workers, etcetera), it also boosts individual employee morale and is much better for the environment.

While many businesses cannot afford to have all their employees working remotely all the time, there is no reason why businesses cannot implement remote days during the week.

Not only would greenhouse gas emissions be shredded by more remote workers, there would be zero impact on a company’s ability to manage employees effectively, courtesy of powerful project management systems like Trello, TimeDoctor, and Slack.

Earth Friendly Technology

With respect to earth-friendly technology, appliances and electronics should all be Energy-Star rated. These rated appliances reduce energy consumption and cut costs, and they’re great for the environment. For eons, companies relied on fluorescent lighting, and standard bulbs to power their stores and offices during business hours.

Unfortunately, these redundant technologies consume more electricity than they need to, given the availability of LED lights which consume only a fraction of the heat and energy of old school lighting. Compact fluorescent lighting systems and LED systems are more expensive than traditional light bulbs, but the long-term benefits for the company and the environment far outweigh the costs.

Less waste (reduced production of glass, plastic, composite material, and potentially dangerous substances) means that lightbulbs nowadays can last for years and years, with no need to replace them, and no harm in the biodegradation processes of these resources either.

Going green to keep the lights on certainly is one of the most-friendly things that businesses can do while saving a ton of money in the process. On a similar note, solar panels, wind-driven energy, and water-driven energy systems can be used in place of traditional electrical and nuclear energy to provide optimal growth friendly technology for businesses.

Reduced Reliance on Convenience-Based Accoutrements

Many companies around the world provide tea, coffee, and hot chocolate pods as a value-added ‘service’ for their employees and customers. Additional accoutrements including paper plates, cups, cutlery, napkins, other added extras are also provided.

However, it is much better for the environment for companies to encourage employees to bring their own thermos, Tupperware, silverware, hot and cold drinks to work. If kettles are provided at work, it is better for companies to offer regular coffee tins, hot chocolate containers, and teabags rather than pods.

The cost savings are dramatic, and the benefits for the environment are significant. Water dispensers and paper cups are also wasteful, particularly when water fountains can save on paper wastage.

To better manage overall energy consumption, businesses can enlist the services of companies to energy auditor operations. Additional calendar events can be scheduled in, as part of the broader macroeconomic-friendly initiatives.

These include Energy Action Month, Earth Day, Arbor Day, and Clean Energy Month, among others. By inculcating employees with a sense of responsibility in regards to the environment, companies can play an outsized role in the planet’s move towards eco-friendly operations overall.

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