It may not be cost effective in the start, it may not add to the bottomline – but that is not the reason you go for sustainability programs.
Eating healthy, exercising may not be cost effective in the start either – rather it will be inconvenient, a digression from the “business as usual” paradigm. But you do it anyway – why? (for people with conscience – others don’t even count)
Because you know it is the right thing to do. Period.
So, what does a sustainability program actually achieve?
- Enthusiasm – lots of it among the employees: People like to work for a company that demonstrates its comittment to something larger than it self
- It gives a great PR branding to the outside world
- You attract like-minded businesses and organizations to work with you: You may not be “the” go-to company, but your initiatives in sustainability will attract – sooner or later, like minded companies who will have your values in alignment with theirs
- When the inevitable “environmental wave” hits the region, you will be well positioned to take advantage of that. In other words, you will be pro-active to change and not reactive.
- Humungous opportunties exist in the “low-hanging fruit” area – which by the way translate to immediate gains
- In some industries, it wins customer loyalty – in fact the only reason
If a company is able to achieve even the first 3 of the 6 listed achievements, the sustainability program would’ve served its purpose – and we haven’t yet talked about the hard core financial gains in the long term. And if you are a business leader, it is your responsibility to positively impact the community you operate in – It becomes a moral compass for any company worth its salt.
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