A lot of businesses are now striving to create a more sustainable business to promote the development of society. Though many people still think that building business sustainability is very costly to achieve, that’s not true. So in this article, we’ll provide you with simple and effective sustainable business strategies and show how you can achieve them without much cost.
Before employing any measures to make your brand sustainable, it’s important to first understand what a sustainable business entails. A clear understanding of your business model from a sustainability standpoint demands that you first understand what sustainable living and the environment is all about. This will help you in both your business decision-making and in increasing awareness about climate and sustainability.
Set Your Brand’s Sustainability Vision
Before you think of doing an overhaul of your brand’s sustainability strategy, you need to first set a clear and realistic vision for it. This vision will serve as your business overall sustainability guide. Once you are clear about what your sustainability objective is, it becomes easy for you to start putting some of those objectives into practice in your local environment.
However, without a clear vision, you’ll be running around in circles without achieving any tangible results. Many businesses have found themselves in this situation. They strive so hard to be sustainable, yet all their efforts fail to deliver a better result. That’s why having a sustainability vision from the beginning is important. It’ll save you a lot of stress and double expenses.
Business Sustainability Gaps To Be Aware Of
To address sustainability accurately, brands need to fill in two critical gaps. The first gap to be bridged is “The knowing and doing gap.” A study by BCG and MIT finds that while 90 percent of executives know that sustainability is critical, only 60 percent integrate it into their strategy. And just about 25 percent have sustainability integrated into their business model.
The second gap is “The competitive edge gap.” More and more brands have started to see sustainability as an area of competitive edge – it’s just about 24 percent of the business. However, it’s critical for all businesses to be compliant. This topic needs to be given special attention. It needs to not be mixed with other issues; compliance is a competitive advantage.
Business Sustainability Practical Recommendations
Just like with the overall business strategy, there is absolutely no one best solution for business sustainability. The right solution depends on the stake and ambition of each business. However, despite this being true, there are still solutions that will work for any business irrespective of their business stakes and ambitions. Here are those useful practical recommendations for all business management teams.
Compliance First, Followed By Competitive Advantage: The first thing brands need to do is to address compliance, which most times relates to energy and pollution efficiency, and waste management regulations. Compliance problems also cover investors. Data from BCG and MIT shows that most investors always move away from compliance risks. Most investors will not invest in companies with poor sustainability performance.
Transparency is a pre-condition for examining and improving business sustainability practices. Businesses need to understand that it will be nearly impossible to judge without transparency. The transparency should be built on the idea that an open environment will help improve the business performance. The most effective way to build transparency is to have open communication with key stakeholders of all levels.
The brand’s inability to engage its customers in its sustainability efforts may cause a disconnect between the brand and its customers, and it will not help the customers understand the brand’s struggle. That’s why it’s essential for brands to get their customers involved in their sustainability initiatives. Such initiatives will also be great for businesses to market their products as well.
Why it’s important to include your customers in sustainability initiatives
There is so much your brand stands to benefit from involving your customers in the business sustainability initiative. It helps your customers to understand how hard you strive to build a sustainable business. It will also prevent your customers from getting disconnected from your business, and make them trust your business because they will feel carried along and not left behind.
Most businesses have begun initiatives that allow their customers to return old clothes or packaging. This initiative involves their customers in the process and enables them to understand the brand’s message better. Therefore, getting your customers involved in your sustainability initiative and increasing awareness about climate and sustainability will help make your brand stand out. It’ll also help support the sustainability initiative.
Final Thoughts On Business Sustainability Strategy
Sustainability practice is beneficial to both brands and society. That’s why many companies that have understood its importance strive to build a sustainable business — though many of them try and fail because of a lack of sustainability vision. However, having read this article from start to finish, we’re pretty sure that you’ll be able to build a sustainable business without much difficulty.