Wondering if you should go green with your business? We have four reasons why you should. Keep reading below to find out how your business can benefit from reducing its impact on our environment.
“Sustainability,” “green,” “organic,” and “eco-friendly” have all become buzzwords over the last couple of years. Everybody is talking about how we need to become more considerate about the way our actions affect our planet.
Whether you turn on the TV, scroll on social media, or talk to your friends and family, there’s always a mention about how our planet is changing due to human’s reckless actions. We hear about environmental threats such as heavy air pollution, climate changes, global warming, deforestation, polluted oceans, soil erosion, and water scarcity. And, this isn’t surprising as lately, people have got access to information on how our environment is impacted by our day-to-day activities.
Yet, the need to be eco-friendlier doesn’t just lie with the average individuals. Businesses must also take the same pledge of reducing their impact on the environment. Today, businesses no longer only exist to maximize profits for owners and shareholders. They must also protect the environment.
According to a survey from Deloitte Global, from more than 2.000 global executives, nearly 90% of them agreed that climate change would negatively affect their organizations. So, by going green, you aren’t just protecting the environment, you’re also protecting your business.
Need more reasons to go green with your business? Keep reading below!
1. Today’s consumers want it
Today’s consumers, especially Millennials and Gen Zs, are looking for more than traditional transactional relationships with brands. No matter what they buy from them, these consumers want companies to do their part to reduce their environmental impact.
A 2019 Deloitte Global Millennial Survey found that more than 1 in four millennials and Gen Zs think brands should try to help stop the human-caused effects on the climate and help protect and improve the environment. However, only 12% of those surveyed believe that brands are doing something to address environmental threats.
Now, here’s the deal: today’s consumers are so motivated to change the business world for the good that they are willing to change their consumption habits, including the brands they shop with, to benefit the environment.
In 2015, a study from Nielsen, which polled over 30.000 consumers in 60 countries around the globe, has found that 73% of Millennial consumers are willing to pay more for goods that come from green companies.
When buying goods today, consumers ask questions like “is it cruelty-free?”, “is it fair trade?”, “does it come from a sustainable source?”, “has it been produced with sustainable materials and procedures?”. It only takes one negative answer to one of these questions for modern consumers to put your product back on the store shelf and buy from your competitors.
In other words, today’s consumers are willing to spend more if they know that what they are spending their money on is actually good for the environment.
2. Green brands attract and retain talent
Today’s consumers are also today’s employees. So, it’s no surprise that they don’t only want to buy from sustainable companies. They also want to work for businesses that are considerate of their environmental impact.
In fact, modern employees want to work in environmentally responsible companies so much that 40% of them have chosen a particular job because the company was sustainable. What’s more, 30% of respondents said that they have left a job in the past because of the business’s lack of sustainability plan.
Another survey from 2016 has found that 64% of Millennials would refuse a job if the company weren’t socially responsible. Moreover, three-quarters of the respondents said that they are willing to accept a smaller salary if that would mean working for a company more in alignment with their values.
Here’s the deal: today’s job seekers are more attracted to brands that care for and protect the environment because they believe that eco-friendly companies are more likely to care for them as well. And, you know what they say, happy employees make happy customers. In fact, a recent poll has found that companies that have green practices in place have a 16% boost in employee productivity.
3. Green businesses attract more engagement
Green businesses don’t only attract more customers and talented employees; they only attract investors and external shareholders who want to be associated with environmental awareness or want to protect our planet.
Nielsen predicts that the sustainability market will reach $150 billion by 2021. So, it’s only natural for investors to want to be part of a market with such great potential these days. In fact, data shows that from 1993 to 2009, highly sustainable companies benefitted from superior stock market performance in the long run.
What’s more, it seems that there has been a tenfold increase in global sustainability investment of $30.7 trillion by April 2019, that’s since 2004.
4. Going green helps save money
Going green with your business doesn’t only help you protect the environment, attract and retain talent or investors. It also helps your business save a lot of money.
For example, going green gives you a lot of tax advantages and incentives. Governments around the world offer tax credits or deductions, such as business tax credits for new renewable energy systems based on wind, solar, or geothermal power. So, deciding to power your business with a sustainable source of energy would equal some pretty advantageous incentives.
Take Belgium, for example, a country that is already well known for its eco-friendly culture. There, most businesses have green practices well put in place. They recycle much of their waste by collaborating with waste management companies such as Miltek in Belgium, and they are repaid for their pledge to protect the environment with green tax incentives. In Belgium, industrial and commercial buildings can benefit from green tax incentives.
Another way in which you can save money by going green with your company is by minimizing your power usage. You can switch the old-fashioned and not so eco-friendly incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent lighting. You can also save money on supplies by recycling your waste and reusing the materials such as paper, plastic, or glass.
Although it may seem like there’s some money to spend on establishing green business practices and procedures, you will save a lot of money over time.