Sustainability does not have to be a terrifying concept. It doesn’t have to be something that is hugely costly and only benefits you minimally. If done right, it can help you revolutionize your business, improve your revenue streams, bolster customer loyalty and futureproof your business. Start today and make significant changes over time, and you can absorb the cost associated with switching and find the best way to market your new business model to the benefit of your company and future.
These six features are just the beginning, but they are where you can benefit the most and make significant headway on your sustainable journey.
01. Environmentally Friendly Raw Materials
The materials you use should be easy to recycle infinitely. This means reducing or eliminating plastic from your production lines as much as possible, especially in regards to so-called single-use plastic.
02. Suppliers that Adhere to International Standards
You need to know what your suppliers are up to, especially if they are overseas. Many ignore standards and laws, and other countries have such lax regulation that exploitation is a natural result. If you wish to be sustainable, you need to work with companies that have the same values. This needs to be implemented right from the start – at the growth or extraction of the raw material. Sustainable practices must be used from that starting point right up until it reaches your customer.
03. Low CO2 Footprint
Your carbon footprint includes the footprint of your suppliers, which is another reason to only partner with those with the same goals towards the environment and social protectionism. Carbon offset programs can help, but you will need to first look into reducing your and your suppliers’ footprint as much as possible in order to make a real impact.
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04. Corporate Social Responsibility
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) means taking care of the people; from your supply chains right to your customers. Ensure everyone working with you is paid fairly and in safe working conditions. As you grow, look for ways to give back, both in communities overseas and right at home.
05. Circular Approach to Waste
A circular approach to waste is achieved first by sorting waste properly. This means sorting paper and cardboard from plastic-coated sheets. It means sorting the different metal scraps, or textile scraps into their material type. You will want to use a baling system and galvanized steel wire to properly bind and store these recyclables to make it easier to sell them on, as you will get better deals with large bulks of material.
06. Quality and Longevity
You need to provide at least one quality aspect of your business. Some companies do this by offering quality products or services, others by offering a quality guarantee for the best price. Only when your business has this quality can it thrive long-term.
To really put your efforts to the test, you should look into nationally and internationally recognized green certifications. They are a useful guide to use when improving your business, and though the first one or two might require significant investment, the rest should follow much easier. You can then ensure your efforts are recognized and strategically implemented.