Go green – it'll save you money! That's what we're told anyway. And while this may be true, there's so much more to making your business environmentally friendly than that. As an executive, it's important to realise the wider range of benefits that come with going green, not just those that focus on reducing expenses. If you're pitching an eco-friendly initiative to a board or to your employees, consider mentioning the gain it will bring to your brand, the long-term benefits of sustainability and the increase in innovative thinking.
1) Building your brand
You've got a huge PR opportunity if you choose to adopt eco-friendly products and business practices.
Consumers today are more environmentally aware than ever. A Capstrat survey found that well over half of consumers consider products' environmental sustainability to be very important in their buying decisions, while a further 56 per cent noted they would pay more for a product that's environmentally friendly. This means that you've got a huge PR opportunity if you choose to adopt eco-friendly products and business practices.
Make as much noise as possible about your new green ways and you'll start to get your image out there as a brand that cares about the environment. In today's climate, where there's little trust in business, showing you have a commitment to sustainability will help you to stand out from the crowd.
2) The long term benefits of sustainability
The businesses that survive these environmental shifts will be those that switch to sustainable materials and practices today.
Going eco-friendly isn't just something you should do for ethical or branding considerations. It's also something that may impact on the long term viability of your business. If you rely heavily on non-renewable resources such as those derived from earth minerals, metal ores or oil (including plastic), think about how your business will operate once these begin to run out, or when they become so scarce that they are too expensive to afford.
The businesses that survive these environmental shifts will be those that switch to sustainable materials and practices today. This can be fairly simple, such as going paperless and moving every part of your day to day operations online, or can be much more dramatic. For instance, do you need to use metal or plastic for every part of your product? Taking time to step back and look at each and every aspect of your business and how you could make it more sustainable might just be what helps you to survive in the long run.
3) Increased innovation
Involve your employees in your environmental initiatives. Asking them to think outside the box on ways to make your products more eco-friendly will help them to think creatively on other projects as well. You'll be introducing a culture of innovation to your business, and this will rub off into all areas of work, not just product development.
Going eco-friendly will help to create a culture of creativity and innovation.
This newly-created culture will see your talent pool improve as well. When recruiting for growth and innovation, culture is a huge part of what attracts the right candidates to you. Google is the ultimate example of this. Look inside their offices – everywhere you look they've got quirky decorations, rock climbing walls and cool furniture. Google is also a leader in greener business practices, powering it's offices with renewable energy and hosting sustainability seminars. It's an environment that screams creativity, and although you might not quite have the budget for an office swimming pool, showing potential hires that you're committed to eco-friendly practices will prove to them that you're committed to innovation.
Looking for an opportunity where you can take eco-friendly practices and innovation to the fore? Jackson Stone & Partners' executive and corporate recruitment services can help. Get in touch today for more information.