Now more than ever, green business is good business.
In a recent survey of young consumers, 73% of respondents said that business innovation would play a key role in solving the urgent environmental challenges we face today.
There is substantial public pressure on major corporations to reduce waste, pollution, and nonrenewable energy use, and many have heeded the call with ambitious commitments – like the 200-plus signatories of the Climate Pledge who aim to reach net zero carbon by 2040.
But America’s small enterprises – which comprise over 99% of all businesses and employ nearly half the workforce – can play a vital role in saving the planet as well. And meaningful change doesn’t have to happen all at once. Here are twelve eco-friendly action items that can also have a positive impact on your team’s well-being, your goodwill, and your bottom line:
1. Encourage your team to work remotely. The COVID pandemic taught businesses that a low-commute workforce can be highly effective. Bring that lesson forward into a healthier future.
2. Go paperless. More and more customers appreciate a fully digital transaction, and you’ll save on the cost of stationery, toner, and postage, as well as space needed for filing cabinets.
3. You know you should recycle – but make sure your business is e-recycling too. Make sure that old computers, monitors, batteries, and other electronic waste is responsibly disposed of.
4. See if your municipality offers free or subsidized transit passes for small businesses. For onsite employees, incentivizing alternative transportation methods can mitigate carbon emissions.
5. Swap out incandescent lightbulbs for longer-lastingLEDs. Traditional bulbs expend 95% of energy on heat, with only 5% used for light. LEDs could save you hundreds on your electric bills.
6. Adopt a local green-friendly cause and do an annualday of service. This is not only a great way to advance a worthy cause – it’s also a great team building and marketing opportunity.
7. If your business sells and ships products, take a close look at your packing materials. Your budget and your customers will appreciate efforts to reduce excess landfill-bound packaging.
8. Many municipalities and utility companies conduct no-cost business energy audits. This is a great way to identify fixes and swap-outs that could save on money and emissions.
9. Look into green web hosting. Running all the servers in the U.S. is equivalent to running five nuclear power plants. See if your data and website can be hosted on renewable energy sources.
10. Make your business literally greener. Adding greenery to your space can absorb pollutants and create a more vibrant and pleasing work environment for your team and your customers.
11. Move to opt-in mailing lists. By renting mailing lists, you’re generating a lot of marketing material that ends up in landfills rather than being absorbed by a relevant audience.
12. Buy sustainable banners. Sometimes you need a big, eye-catching sign – but next time, see if you can order one that’s made with recyclable soda bottles and printed with water-based ink.
Choosing some of these tips to implement can not only help the environment but help you to lower operating costs, attract and retain top talent, and appeal to cause-driven customers.
And when you’re ready to make a big leap toward sustainable growth, consider Nu Direction. Whether you want to invest in more efficient technology, roll out an innovative new product, or build a green-friendly storefront, your business can receive instant preliminary offers and loans up to $500,000 with funding in as little as one week.
The information contained herein is for general informational purposes only and does not constitute tax, legal, or business advice.
Brought to you by Nu Direction Lending, a digital-first business lender that was formed and is funded by credit unions. To learn more about term loans for your business, visit nudirectionlending.com or contact us by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 866-354-7151.
Nu Direction Lending is a digital-first business lender that was formed and is funded by credit unions. We combine the speed and convenience of online lenders with the personalized touch of the local credit unions who help fuel our local economies.