Sustainability is a key factor for any business to ensure long-term success. To achieve this goal, companies must start by understanding their core values and creating products that meet their customers' needs. Sustainable growth is not something that can be hacked, and it requires customers that align with the company's values. To help, 14 members of the Forbes Business Council have explored how a company can ensure its long-term sustainable growth. When interviewing potential employees, it is important to ask questions that give you an idea of how aligned they are with the company culture.
For example, if one of your core values is “vulnerability”, you could ask questions about the person's ability to talk openly about some of their low points and how they overcame adversity. This will help you determine if they are a good fit for your company. Reaching consumers who care about sustainability is also essential. You can decide which people or companies supply your company by weighing the “10 C's”. According to the UK government, an average startup could reduce its energy bill by 18 to 25% if it installed energy efficiency measures with an average payback of less than 1.5 years.
And it's estimated that 40% of these savings would require zero capital cost. Another great way to involve your employees in the sustainability process is to take steps that encourage volunteering. There are many strategies you can follow to achieve this goal, such as offering flexible working hours or providing incentives for employees who volunteer their time. Additionally, you can switch to renewable energy sources, which is an easy way to reduce your company's carbon footprint. According to Friends of the Earth, the use of renewable energy has increased tenfold since 2004, and 37% of electricity now comes from renewable sources. It's now cheaper to use wind and solar energy than gas, so many people have turned to companies like Bulb and Octopus as energy providers.
Bulb states that each customer that switches “reduces their carbon impact by 3.4 tons of CO2 per year”, which means that each renewable energy customer contributes to the fight for a safer and healthier planet. The UK aims to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050, so this should also be one of your company's goals. To help reach this goal, you can encourage the use of bicycles to work and share elevators, limit business trips and invest in remote work technology, send your employees a reusable coffee cup: the ideas are endless. Joining the B Corp community and becoming a certified B corporation is a rigorous process and involves completing the B Impact Assessment, which analyzes different areas of your business such as your supply chain, labor rights, and your carbon footprint. As Raymond Ackerman, founder of the retail group Pick n Pay says: “Doing good is good business”.B Corps are companies that meet the highest standards of social and environmental performance and are legally obliged to consider the planet in all their decisions along with people and profits. Many small businesses not only offer plastic-free delivery but also refill services to customers, driving the returns and refills revolution. In Sustainable Business Strategy, you will acquire the sustainability skills necessary to analyze different business models capable of driving change and explore how a company can consciously address some of today's most far-reaching challenges such as climate change and income inequality. Business leaders must focus on their own behaviors and on the behaviors of their team to foster a culture that supports growth.
Every office needs new equipment from time to time; it may be because your company is expanding or because the services it offers have increased. If you don't try to innovate, your company risks stagnating and not being able to compete in the market. In conclusion, sustainable business growth requires companies to address their core values and create products that solve their customers' problems. Additionally, companies should switch to renewable energy sources, encourage volunteering among employees, join the B Corp community and become certified B corporations, install energy efficiency measures in their offices, and focus on fostering a culture that supports growth.