Green Business is Smart Business
Whether or not you are directly involved in a “green” business, building sustainable practices into your business model is a very smart thing to do. Research studies show that more and more people expect businesses to make, sell and/or support environmentally responsible products and services. They are also looking for businesses to participate in simple environmental practices (e.g. recycling). In addition, more and more people are choosing to buy locally. Many green practices will save such direct expenses as energy costs, reusing products and reducing use of paper, ink.The Triple Bottom Line
The performance of public companies today is no longer simply measured by bottom line profit, but rather there is a focus on what is commonly referred to as the “triple bottom line”: people, planet and profit. The idea is that not only dollars matter, but also how companies care for people they employ, companies' relation to the community and what the companies are doing to be responsible stewards of our planet. This performance measure is quickly migrating to the private sector as well.
What can you do?
The opportunities are endless and many are easier to implement than you think. The three R’s remain the key: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Reduce the amount of packaging you use, the number of catalogs you receive and the amount of material that you print rather than storing it electronically. Reduce energy usage by switching to energy-efficient lighting and a programmable thermostat. Reuse packing materials or shredded documents if you need to ship or store items. Reuse single sided-documents to print material for your own use or as scrap paper. Recycle paper, glass, cardboard, plastic and solid waste. (Check out the Cuyahoga County Solid Waste District website at http://www.cuyahogaswd.org/ for lots of great information on recycling.). One more thing; Be sure to choose local suppliers for your own purchasing needs!
Sharing Best Practices
Going forward, we will highlight in this column various businesses in Lakewood that have adopted sustainable practices. This will provide an opportunity for all of us to learn from one another, moving Lakewood to the forefront of sustainable communities.
Remember, becoming a greener business is not only a good thing for our planet, it is also a good thing for your bottom line.