Sustainability means the capacity to endure. In business terms, a sustainable business is one that is resilient and will thrive in the long term. Today, the world is much more conscious of the climate and our effect on the planet. Sustainability is important in every industry in a way that it never was before. Many businesses are integrating sustainable practices into their operations. A sustainable business is one that generates profit while also improving environmental and societal conditions. That can include what the product or service is as well as the way that the business does.
There are five key areas that most businesses address: Purchasing, Transport, Well-being, Waste, and Energy. More and more often customers want to know that the business they are supporting cares about sustainability. Furthermore, there are many major benefits of a business practicing sustainability.
Increase Productivity and Reduce Costs
Although many argue that sustainable practices actually hurt corporate profit, there are efforts that actually help to conserve resources and streamline efforts. When this happens employees experience an increased level of productivity which actually reduces costs. Some cost reduction efforts are surprisingly simple, such as insulating walls with geothermal heating and cooling systems and turning off unnecessary lights. While it’s true that some of these sustainability efforts are more expensive to implement than others, the long-term results pay off and justify the investment.
Improved Brand Image
The Natural Marketing Institute completed a survey that found that 58 percent of consumers take into consideration a company’s impact on the environment when they’re deciding where to purchase services or products and prefer to spend their money with a company that practices sustainable habits. In fact, there is no doubt that consumers favor businesses that support social, personal, and environmental values. Furthermore, people appreciate and gravitate to companies that are active within their communities. This creates a wonderful opportunity for a business to improve its brand image. When a business allows the slogan of “doing good” a pillar of an advertising campaign it not only helps brand awareness but also enhances the image of the company and engages with not only the consumer but employees and their families as well.
Other benefits of becoming a sustainable business include reducing waste with recycling practices, attracting employees and investors who want to associate with positive, mindful organizations, and pleasing shareholders as costs will be lowered by profits can be increased.