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8 Business Reasons to be Eco-Friendly

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Eco-friendly practices can be a desirable choice for any business - whether you’re a startup designing your approach, an established business looking for new tips or an enterprise with sustainability goals. Of course, you have a lot more to gain than good PR. There are some very real rewards when a business goes green. 

Here are eight reasons to choose eco-friendly and sustainable business practices:

1) Save Money

Think about the potential waste that could be happening in your business. From paper and office supplies to electricity from lighting or conditioned air – there’s likely some places you could improve. Engage employees by regularly talking about use of resources and make sure you’re set up to recycle. Keep equipment on only when it’s in use, program your thermostat according to business hours, or install motion sensor lights. If you’re conscious of getting the most out of your resources, you're likely to see costs decrease. And when eco-friendliness is a watchword, you might be surprised about the ways everyone chips in to conserve. 

2) Build a Positive Reputation 

Public opinion strongly favors sustainability. A positive reputation and social proof for your brand can go miles in building your customer base. If you have a storefront, add a window cling advertising your renewable practices. Also add information to your website touting your environmentally conscious choices.

3) Improve Employee Morale

Employees often enjoy working in eco-friendly businesses.Today’s workforce is looking for more than a job where they can punch the clock – many desire to develop careers within companies that demonstrate environmental and social responsibility. In one study, 51 percent reported that they won’t work for a company that doesn’t have strong social and environmental commitments.1 

4) Keep Employees Healthy

Did you know that employees of companies that promote a healthier workplace take fewer sick days? According to the Green Business Bureau, sick days decrease at a rate of 20 percent!2  Part of creating a healthy work environment is ensuring that your space is clean and efficient. Make sure HVAC air filters are cleaned regularly and you’re providing optimal lighting conditions for your workforce. (Natural light is often king!) Even something as simple as adding potted plants can help – studies from Sweden indicate that plants can clean the air of the pollutants emitted by printers, copiers and adhesives.3 

5) Increase Self-Sufficiency

Another way to go green is by investing in equipment that allows you to generate and use some of your own energy. Solar panels and microturbines are both good options, depending on the location of your business. Off-the-grid power is particularly advantageous to protect from outages caused by severe weather or natural disasters – not to mention it’ll lower your monthly energy bill. 

6) Serve the Demand for Green Products

There is increasing interest in products produced with environmentally friendly materials and methods. Sometimes, you may be able to swap one material for something more renewable with little to no cost difference. Consider whether your business can pivot green where your product is concerned, and make a point to market it that way.

7) Gain Tax Credits 

If you want to cash in on renewable energy efforts, now is the time to start. Depending on where you live and what kind of equipment you’re purchasing, you may be able to claim credit on your taxes – sometimes up to 30 percent! From solar arrays and geothermal equipment to combined heat and power and electric vehicles, you could stand to benefit. We recommend working with a tax preparation professional or financial adviser to identify the best incentives. You can also read more about it in our recent post.

8) Partner with Other Businesses

There is a large community of green and eco-friendly companies that value working together. So by adopting an eco-friendly business model, you gain new networking opportunities. Additionally, if you're looking to do business with a government organization, eco-friendliness is often required.

How can going eco-friendly benefit your business? 

From happier, healthier employees to enthusiastic customers and business partners, there are no downsides. Try a few new measures this year and watch the returns roll in.

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Posted: May 10, 2018