14 ways to make your business more eco friendlyOct 12, 2021
Most of us have taken some steps (or a lot of steps) in our homes to be more eco-friendly, but a large proportion of small business haven’t taken a similar approach to reducing their businesses’ footprint.
In truth, your business likely has even more potential than your home, to make positive changes that will have a substantial impact.
Here are some ways you can audit your business and make some changes for the better.
- Sustainable office supplies - Use recycled paper, biodegradable pens and stationary.
- Reusable Items – replace disposable utensils with reusable supplies instead.
- Recycle – beyond the paper bin – make sure you are providing bins and instructions for all the materials used in your workplace that can be recycled.
- Get off the mailing lists – audit what catalogs and mailings your business receives and stop any that aren’t critical to receive.
- Recycled or repurposed office furniture – see if you can use the furniture in a different way, or upgrade what you have to make it work.
- Sign up for e-bills – get your invoices and bills sent via email instead of paper bills.
- Renewable energy sources – install solar panels.
- Energy conservation – swap your bulbs for CFL or LED lights.
- Unplug equipment – Computers and electronics actually consume power even when they are turned off, so make it easy by using power strips and you can pull the plug on multiple devices at once, when not in use.
- Adjust your thermostat – just a couple of degrees warmer in the summer, and cooler in the winter, will make a big difference and save you money too.
- Reuse ink cartridges – great for the environment and your wallet.
- Allow employees to telecommute – it may not be possible all the time, but even allowing occasional work from home days for staff, saves fuel and as a bonus, helps with employee satisfaction.
- Buy fair trade coffee and organic office lunches and snacks – buying local helps too whenever you can.
- Get connected – using cloud technology and tools like Dropbox or Trello you can collaborate on projects with your team without wasting paper or ink.
There are bound to be even more ways your specific business can become greener. Often this is an enormous opportunity to amplify our positive impact. By creating your product to be more eco-friendly, or reducing the waste on your outgoing packages for example, you can affect the impact each of your customers has as well, just by doing business with you.
For example, one of our companies sells promotional products like pens, mugs and branded apparel. A lot of promotional products can be wasteful and become landfill pretty quickly after it’s given out, but by sourcing and offering our clients more eco -friendly, biodegradable and sustainable products, we give them the opportunity to make better choices and amplify that impact.
Rather than disposable pens, we steer them toward steel drinking straws. Instead of plastic bags, we offer cotton reusable bags. And instead of plastic water bottles, we encourage reusable glass. With every sale, we have the opportunity to create change for the better.
So have a look at your business and how you can not only reduce your waste, but your customers consumption as well, through your products.
If you are starting or growing your business make sure you check out the One Step Empire podcast where we walk you through one simple step each week to build your empire.
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