8 Sustainable Business Practices
What is sustainability and how can businesses ensure compliance while engaging in operations and practices that are sustainable? In this blog, we shall take a closer look at sustainability in business practices and how businesses can find their way about it.
Today, an increasing number of businesses across the globe are understanding that they can make profits by doing good. In terms of the corporate world, being sustainable means doing business without negatively impacting the environment or society.
The United States Environmental Protection Agency says sustainability is important as it “creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony, that permit fulfilling the social, economic, and other requirements of present and future generations. Sustainability is important to make sure that we have and will continue to have, the water, materials, and resources to protect human health and our environment.”
While a business’ vision can solely be based on a sustainability model, there may be others who may simply want to align some part of their goals with the sustainability cause. Whatever purpose and vision may be, to ensure sustainability compliance, a business needs to follow a set of ‘good’ practices. Take a look at the top ones listed below:
Companies and organizations are either involved in the production of goods or provide services. One of the ways to ensure sustainability is to shun materials that harm the environment and make use of sustainable ones in the manufacturing process. As far as possible, try to purchase or invest in energy-efficient products, preferably EPEAT registered.
Check on emissions
It is now mandatory for businesses to report their greenhouse emissions in several countries. Besides, many organizations are now voluntarily resorting to cutting down their carbon footprint. Optimizing the supply chain to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is a good practice to ensure a sustainable, better, and greener future.
Exploring renewable energy
Switching to renewable energy sources for electricity purposes has now become a common practice among businesses these days. Besides, working with biomass is also among the widely explored practices. As much as possible, try and introduce policies that aim at reducing energy consumption.
Investing in education, health, employment
From sponsoring education funds, initiating projects for the upliftment, employment of the local community to upgrading the local health infrastructure – a lot can be done to ensure your organization’s involvement in sustainable practices. Organizing plantation drives, blood donation camps can be some of the short-term, yet regular, activities that your organization can routinely take up.
Sustainable work policies
One of the ways to engage in sustainable practices is by designing such a strategy and implementing it in the workplace environment. Using office spaces more mindfully, creating green spaces within and around the workplace environment, adopting energy-saving measures, promoting car-pooling for employees’ commute are some of the many ways through which sustainable practices can be implemented in the workplace setting.
We all have come across the example of restaurant chains investing in recyclable and environment-friendly cutlery, straws, shopping bags, et cetera to promote the green agenda. An organization can commit to running a program for products and materials that can be recycled such as paper products, electronics, et cetera.
Water conservation is of utmost importance. Devising a strategy to curb or minimize water wastage in your day-to-day operations is an ideal first step toward building a sustainable ecosystem.
Waste and chemical management
As we learn more about the impact of chemicals on the environment, one thing that cannot be denied is their adverse effects. An organization can make a difference by committing to using green cleaning products and non-chemical products.
An effective waste management system that ensures no adverse impact on the environment or nearby communities is also a must.
The road to achieving 100 percent sustainability is not an easy one, it requires patience and persistence. While some ideas may fail, others might take off instantly. It will all begin to make sense and exhibit results once you find the right mix of sustainable practices for your business model that will not only benefit the society and stakeholders but also lead to boosting credibility and profitability – until then, keep at it, keep trying and do not quit!
Artemis Impact is a network of corporate, donors & non-profits. With our corporate enterprise solution, we aim to empower companies to build human-centered impact stories and create sustainable impact with their CSR programs & core business.