There are many different reasons why becoming more sustainable will benefit your business, whether it is financially, socially or environmentally. However, before you start implementing any practices, it can help to understand what it’s about and how to add it to your business plan.
Sustainability, in the true sense, means the ‘capacity to endure’. In business, this means that you should be in it for the long haul. It also means setting up a business that is resilient to changes and which will thrive in the long-term. A sustainable business is one that generates profit, all whilst improving environmental and societal conditions. This should include what you do, as well as how you operate.
There are lots of ways that being more sustainable will help your business - it will help you become more efficient, improve your company’s reputation, attract and retain employees and even achieve better growth. In this current climate, almost every business will benefit from embracing sustainability, so here are 4 reasons why you should consider it.
It Helps Address Issues within Modern Business
It’s a hard fact to acknowledge, but we are all polluting the environment in one way or another. But, given that businesses are consuming more energy than ever before and are responsible for much larger amounts of waste, individual business footprints are increasing too. When large companies fail to acknowledge the significance of their contribution to pollution and waste, it poses a huge threat.
A report was recently published which found that just 100 companies are responsible for causing over 70% of the world’s total greenhouse gas emissions. These companies are producing enough emissions to have a hugely critical impact on climate change and, whilst most businesses aren’t almost as polluting as the giants, such as Chevron and Shell, it’s this that shows that even a single business can have an impact on the environment.
It Helps Maintain Resilience
As always, the future remains uncertain, but the damage which climate change is having on our planet is unarguable, so businesses should expect the unexpected. Those businesses that adopt a more structured approach are able to consider what the future holds when it comes to environmental impacts and sustainability. By incorporating this into your business plan, sustainability will offer the prospect for a huge potential value for a company’s competitive future.
It Supports Innovation
Perhaps one of the biggest reasons why companies no longer fear to have a huge drain on their resources when it comes to trying something new is down to the innovations which are currently available, which means that making the switch to become more sustainable is far easier. For many businesses, sustainability is a huge focus, particularly for those businesses which sell products, as they often receive backlash over packaging and environmental sustainability.
Making changes to the production, shipping and packaging methods is an easier way for brands to become eco-friendly. This can be seen across a wide range of industries, with noticeable changes being made and some of the long-standing issues within the business being addressed.
The beauty industry is a huge example of this, as it is a predominately plastic-based in terms of packaging. Some brands have taken sustainability on board and release new product ranges with a sustainable and eco-friendly focus in order to help the environment and appeal to a wider audience. For example, Wish Upon A Sparkle, AndKeep and AASkincare have all taken steps towards becoming more sustainable.
It Helps Ensure a Liveable Future
The biggest reason as to why we should care for our planet and environment is pretty obvious – it will enable us to continue to thrive on it. We all have an ethical and moral obligation to one another, future generations and other species to sustain the world we live in and if we don’t act responsibly, then we choose to add to the problems that future generations face. This transfers into a business too, as the choices we make now will have a direct impact on the future - which is a hugely serious responsibility.
In terms of business, sustainability is critical for survival. Organisations who want to have a long future, perhaps in even 100 years’ time, need to plan for long-term success. One way that this can be achieved is by building a sustainable supply chain. Where do your raw materials come from? Where will they come from in 10, 20 or even 50 years? Having a sustainable operation chain in place helps to put your business well ahead of the competition - this is a certain and ever-growing business advantage, particularly when it comes to sustainability.
Written by Natalie Wilson
About the Author
Natalie Wilson is a freelance writer with a particular focus on sustainability and eco-friendly living. Whether you’re looking for a new meditation method or some facts on plastic pollution, she’s your girl! When not writing, Natalie can be found heading to the gym or walking her dog. You can connect with her on Twitter @NatWilson976.
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