Energy efficiency isn’t just the responsible thing to do, it’s also great for your business. These 7 go green strategies will help you get started.
How would you like to save 1 million per year on your electric bill? How about increasing your energy efficiency by 25%?
This might sound too good to be true, but businesses are actually finding these types of benefits by implementing go green strategies like solar energy, appliance upgrades, and telecommuting.
This article will show you the importance of go green strategies and show you how they can work for you.
Why Implement Go Green Strategies?
So you know all about global warming and environmental needs, but why should you use as a business owner implement any environment-friendly tactics?
Let’s break the reasons down into three categories:
Your customers are hungry for environmentally friendly companies. Consumers feel better about themselves when they buy products from sustainable businesses. The younger generation is even opting to buy more expensive items from eco-friendly brands.
Implementing go green strategies could open up a whole new market for your business.
An eco-friendly business also attracts new employees and keeps the ones you have happier.
In one study, 2/3 of employees say they would accept a lower salary if they could work for an environmentally responsible company.
A UCLA study shows that employees are 16% more productive at eco-friendly companies.
Happy employees mean less turn over which is a huge expense for companies. The average cost of a new employee ranges from $3,000-$8,000! Happy employees are also more likely to support and advertise your products/brand.
Finally, investors want businesses who implement go green strategies.
Since businesses with lower operating expenses are a better investment, stockholders want to see businesses that are eco-friendly.
When it comes right down to it, investors are also just regular people who like to feel like they’re helping a cause. They, like customers, are more likely to invest in a company whose mission they support and like.
Investors also tend to set aside 1 out of 5 investment dollars for socially responsible companies.
Now that you’re motivated to use go green strategies, let get down to the practical application.
1. Reduce Waste
Let’s look around your office. How much paper is being thrown away every day? How much was your last electrical bill? How many cardboard boxes are you tossing per week?
The answers to these questions should give you a place to start. If your electric bill is high, turn off the lights in the break and storerooms. Place a fifteen-minute sleep mode on all the computers.
Stop printing documents as much as possible and rely more on emails. Instead of cardboard storage boxes, invest in some Rubbermaid equipment.
These are just a few ideas to get you started, but the first step is to open your eyes to the waste that occurs around you every day.
2. Install Water Coolers
Instead of your employees going through a carton of bottled water a day (whether you provide it or they bring it from home), install a water cooler. This will make it easier for people to stop using disposable bottles.
Also, consider giving your employees and customers a custom water bottle with the company logo. This is free advertising and eco-friendly!
How often do you have to change your light bulbs?
Consider upgrading to LEDs. While the initial cost is higher, the bulbs can last for 20 years. No one likes changing bulbs anyway.
Upgrade to green appliances (copier, microwave, refrigerator, etc.). These use fewer utilities, which saves you money in the future. Not to mention the customer appeal of seeing eco-friendly appliances in your office.
4. Solar Power
This might seem like a lofty goal, but it’s not too hard to convert to solar these days.
Solar energy is already being utilized by some giants like Walmart, Target, IKEA, Google, and Apple. Why shouldn’t your business start reaping the benefits as well?
Solar power is sustainable, pays for itself in a few years, and looks great to your customers. Your office space will also appreciate significantly when you install solar panels.
Tax incentives are also huge for installing solar panels. Tax credits can offset about 30% of the initial cost. Plus, you can initially deduct 85% of your installation cost!
Many companies like Shine Solar offer free quotes to help your business start taking advantage of solar power.
5. Carpooling/Public Transit
Offer your employees incentives like a casual Friday or donuts on Monday to get them to carpool. The fewer cars on the road, the fewer carbon emissions to worry about.
If your business is in a larger city, encourage your employees to take the subway or bus. You can give out free subway cards or bus tokens as incentives for good work.
Also, consider having a bike to work week. Many cities do this already. Your business’s participation can be great advertising as well as helping to reduce carbon pollution.
Remember planting that tree on Earth Day in the fifth grade? Turns out the same thinking is one of the great go green strategies.
By planting more trees and shrubs, you are helping to decrease the amount of carbon dioxide in the air. This helps to counterbalance pollution.
Not to mention that having an employee planting party is a lot of fun!
This strategy may make you a more popular boss.
Let your employees stay home and conference over the phone or computer a few days a month or even every week. Technology is already in place that allows distance working, why not take advantage of it?
This will reduce the overall costs of operation in your office (heat, AC, water, etc.), and your employees will be happier!
In summary, let’s consider the words of Elon Musk:
“Sustainable energy will happen no matter what. If Tesla never existed, it would have to happen out of necessity. It’s tautological. If you don’t have sustainable energy, it means you have unsustainable energy. Eventually, you will run out, and the laws of economics will drive civilization towards sustainable energy, inevitably.”
If society is already pushing for more sustainability, don’t you want to get ahead of the curve by implementing go green strategies?
Check out more business-building strategy articles here!