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Why is sustainability in business important?



Our lives are becoming increasingly more sustainable – from the transition to paper straws in many of our favourite beverages to the shift in buying fashion second-hand, it is clear that sustainability can no longer be a second thought when it comes to business operations.


In fact, Forbes named business sustainability – or reducing the environmental costs of doing business - as the number one trend for 2022. Businesses that operate sustainability may increase their customer base and find it easier to attract top talent over the long term.


But what does “sustainable business” entail and how can it be implemented within day-to-day business operations? This blog post will explore how we can become more sustainable when it comes to business and lessen the impact operations may have on the environment.


1. REDUCE YOUR WASTE


The number one way for your business to become sustainable is by reducing the amount of waste generated through its operations.


This can be done by implementing a recycling policy within the workplace, or through energy saving practices, such as: converting to energy efficient lighting and turning off appliances not in use.


Not only are such practices great for the environment, but also great for your budget too, making sustainability a two-way street.



2. SUPPLY CHAIN


Another way to influence how sustainable your business is can be to consider the practices of your supply chain.


Statistics suggest that customers prefer working with sustainable companies that are environmentally friendly, so it may be useful to note which companies are ticking the sustainability boxes when it comes to ordering supplies - how about using recycled paper in the office or biodegradable mailers if you are an online retailer?


While such changes may feel small, a commitment to zero-waste may also work in your favour and increase the attraction of your business to those who are like-minded.



3. EMPLOYEE TRAINING


If you want to establish sustainability within your long-term plan, it may be useful to provide sustainability training for your employees.


It may be possible for your organisation to become carbon literate through online programmes, such as that offered by the Carbon Literacy Project.


However, encouraging employees to make small changes within the workplace in the ways indicated may also help to combat climate change and foster the feel-good factor within your organisation.



With more and more businesses focusing on sustainability, it is important not to be swept away through ill-preparation. A survey by McKinsey indicated that 70 percent of respondents had a formal sustainability policy. With more than half of UK businesses set to increase spending on sustainability in 2022, it is clear that now is the time to implement sustainability within your organisation to harness the benefits to both the environment and your business’ bottom line.

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