Thursday, April 24, 2014

Is Your Small Business “Green”?



Tips to Help Your Business Go Green

In today’s business market, “going green” is something that many companies are taking into consideration – the buzz around renewable resources and becoming environmentally friendly reaches not only business owners but also consumers. In recent years, discussing and implementing green business practices, products, and services has become expected and something that consumers look for when they consider a company. Although solar panels on the office roof may not be in your budget, there are some things that can be done to help the business “go green” without breaking the bank.

Stop Using Disposables

On average, an office worker uses up to 500 disposable cups within one year – it has even been estimated that office workers go through enough disposable products such as plates, cups, and silverware every year to circle the Earth 300 times! A great way to combat this and take small steps toward green business is by purchasing reusable kitchen items for the office. Although this has a much larger cost up front, it will significantly cut down on the amount of garbage being created in the office. Also, purchasing reusable items can help the business save money over time by not having to purchase disposables periodically throughout the year.

Use Virtual Meetings to Reduce Travel

Traveling for meetings or visiting clients can use a lot of resources and fumes from vehicles that can be harmful for the environment. Instead of hopping in the car to meet with colleagues, using virtual meeting tools can help to reduce fuel consumption, saving you money and doing less damage to the environment. Even though virtual meeting tools can be expensive, there are a number of low-cost and even free meeting tools available to businesses online. If you are concerned about sharing documents or not having face-to-face interaction, a number of these conferencing tools allow clients to video chat, share documents, and use a simulated white board during their meetings.

Use Paper Wisely to Save Energy

Although using paper in the office does not have a direct effect on the environment, the way this valuable resource is produced and shipped definitely does. Paper manufacturers consume a huge amount of energy when harvesting and shipping trees, processing them into paper and shipping the product out to different retailers. In order to make the most out the paper you have on hand and cut down on energy consumption overall, make sure to only print documents when it is absolutely necessary and try to print double-sided copies whenever possible. Not only will reducing paper consumption help the environment, it will also help cut down on office supply costs for the business.

More often than not, going green within a business not only has a huge impact on the environment but also a positive impact on the productivity and efficiency within the business. By using reusable products, cutting down on paper usage and utilizing virtual meeting tools businesses can easily and inexpensively take steps to become more environmentally friendly. An added bonus of implementing these tips is that they can also help the business save money over time, which is just one more reason for you to consider making your small business “green”.

Do you need more help with your small business? Stacy O'Quinn would love to serve as your small business mentor. For more information on how Stacy can help you, click here.

*Picture Courtesy of epSos.de via Creative Commons License

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