Written by: Wayne Elsey, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
If you're a business leader, learn these 5 tips that are vital for your company to develop sustainability in business with success.
Sustainability is a hot topic no matter where you are in the world. Everyone wants to know how to become more sustainable, from governments and businesses to individuals. It doesn't take much to start thinking about ways you can incorporate sustainability in business and life. The reality is that reducing waste and using resources wisely positively impact the environment and your bottom line.
However, that doesn’t mean it’s an easy thing to do. For your business to become sustainably successful, you need to take steps beyond simply thinking about them. You need to make sure these changes happen in your company daily, so they become part of normal business operations. In short, you don’t want it to become something put in place for a short period and then end.
Therefore, to make things stick in your business, the following five tips will help ensure durability.
1. Develop a sustainability plan
The first thing you want to do is to develop a plan. You can’t just think about making changes to your business and hope for the best to happen. You have to take action. For example, you might want to fully become paperless and help reduce paper waste while increasing digital security.
Whatever you decide to do, it’s vital to do it. It’s one thing to think about doing something different and put these ideas into action. One of the most effective ways to achieve success for a plan is to start by doing things in small steps rather than in enormous leaps. Further, that helps to measure what’s happening and allows you to adjust as necessary.
2. Measure and monitor
The next activity is to set up how you will measure and monitor activities and success. You need to know exactly what’s happening in your business around sustainability. And you need to do this regularly. It might be a monthly review, or it might be something more frequent. Either way, you need to track things in quantifiable ways.
One of the critical issues around measurement is how. In other words, how can you measure sustainability in business? There are many routes on the path. However, there's one essential rule. When everything is easy to verify, it's vital not to attempt greenwashing in the information age. Once you start on the journey, it's got to be genuine and transparent.
3. Collaborate with others in the business
When you look to make changes to your business, you’ll find you can’t make a difference on your own. This is often the case when it comes to sustainability as well. To make progress at a sustainable level, you need to collaborate with others. In other words, sustainability in business requires your team, customers, suppliers, and community.
In short, you need to get the help of everyone in your sphere of influence. By engaging with others, you can make progress much faster. Moreover, you’ll benefit from any expertise and help others to provide. Ultimately, to be a green company, you want to demonstrate that you're fully immersed in sustainability. Your customers will love you for it.
4. Educate employees
Another element for climate change and sustainability success is to educate your team. This might sound a little obvious, but it’s surprising how many companies don’t do it. For example, you want your employees to be more environmentally friendly. However, when you talk to them about what it means, they often don’t know where to start.
So, by educating your team on various aspects of sustainability, you help raise awareness within the company. Remember, education is a form of empowerment. It can help to create guidelines and standards for your employees. For instance, you can include things like the types of energy providers you recommend, water policy, etc. By creating guidelines and standards, you help your employees become more sustainable. Further, you develop a culture of sustainability.
5. Invest in innovation
Finally, invest in innovation. Innovation is vital for business sustainability, yet, it’s something where many companies struggle. Businesses need to be innovative to survive and thrive in a competitive market. Unfortunately, innovation is often at risk when it comes to sustainability.
Many companies find themselves in a situation where they can’t adapt quickly enough. But, you can do it in several ways. First, you can invest in technology to help you to make your operations more sustainable. Second, you can invest in the innovation of your people and their ideas by creating a culture of sustainability within your company.
Build a culture of sustainability
A final tip is to build a culture of sustainability because nothing matches human creativity. This will take a while to do, but it’s something that you need to make happen. It's vital to ensure that sustainability is part of your company culture. Doing so means your employees always think about ways they can become more sustainable. And as we know, becoming sustainable will eventually lead to reduced waste and costs. Sustainability helps reduce waste, save money, and use resources more wisely. It will also help create a better and cleaner environment for future generations.
Wayne Elsey, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine
Wayne Elsey is the founder and CEO of Elsey Enterprises. Among his independent brands, he is also the founder and CEO of Funds2Orgs. This social enterprise helps nonprofits, schools, churches, civic groups, individuals, and others raise funds while helping to support micro-enterprise (small business) opportunities in developing nations and the environment.