We often hear about all the success stories of companies that have had success with sustainability in their business. What we often don’t hear about is all the companies that have failed by implementing methods that simply didn’t work for them or was just poorly implemented. Understanding what can go wrong is essential in making sure that you don’t commit the same mistakes yourself. Here are some of the most common mistakes people make when trying to go green.
Not Going Deep Enough
One of the biggest mistakes people make when trying to market their business as green is not going beyond the surface. Some just concern themselves with adding a few electric cars to their fleet or changing their light bulbs for LED lights. However, customers are savvier than ever, and they have ways to know if certain companies are serious about their plans. So, if you don’t want to be accused of “greenwashing” your business, make sure that you do everything in your power to reduce your footprint at every level.
Trying Too Many Things at Once
That’s another common mistake a lot of businesses commit. They try to implement way too many methods at once and end up getting overwhelmed. You shouldn’t try to battle sustainability on multiple fronts at once, start small and work your way up. Also have a clear plan in place with your objectives clearly laid out.
If you’re in the grocery business for instance, you could start with custom recycle bags with your store’s logo on it. Then you could move to using alternative energy sources, like solar energy for instance. Then you could consider investing in new hybrid vans for your delivery fleet, etc, etc. By doing small steps, you’ll be able to reach your sustainability goals without spreading yourself too thin.
Not Communicating Your Commitment to Your Customers
You should do everything in your power to communicate your mission to your customers and show your progress. You should be proud of your initiatives and also use them to build awareness for your brand. This is also a great way to connect on a deeper level with your customers who may be inclined to participate in some of your events instead of just being one of your customers.
Overlooking Low to No Cost Solutions
Far too many businesses wrongly assume that going green will cut into their spending. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. While some things might be expensive, such as having solar panels installed, there are always some low costs alternatives that you can use instead. If you want to reduce energy consumption for instance, using better lighting and making sure that power management settings are enabled on all your office equipment could be a great first step. You can then move to more expensive things if that’s within your budget.
Trying to go green at any cost just isn’t sustainable from a business standpoint. Make sure that you evaluate the options at your disposition and make sure that you do what you can within your means to steer your business towards a more sustainable future.
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