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Business leaders committed to sustainability must create a green corporate culture that engages all of their employees on the company’s green journey. Looking after our planet is something that we must all be apart of. If we want a long-living, healthy environment for future generations to thrive, we must do our part now. Not only is sustainable living important for the Earth overall, but on a smaller scale, social-responsibility is starting to play a crucial role in business development. Companies with business models that make use of renewable resources and incorporate eco-friendly policies and procedures will be a step ahead of the competition as business shifts to meet the new expectations of employees and customers. It has become clear that the next generation of customers, clients, employees, and consumers will demand eco-friendly companies. The critical first-step to create a sustainable, socially-responsible and environmentally-friendly business is to create the right culture.

Starting the Conversation with Employees

Whether your business has incorporated eco-friendly practices into their standards for years, or your business is just getting started, the best way to take up the challenge is to start with employees. Dedication is the single-most effective way of accomplishing the goal. Starting the conversation could be as easy as sending out a monthly employee newsletter that discusses the importance of sustainability and how the company plans to enforce those protocols. Now, we all know that people can be lackadaisical when it comes to reading their emails these days, so in order to really spread the word efficiently, companies might think about holding an employee training day for sustainability. Requiring a day where employees must commit themselves to learning about the cause is an excellent way to get them engaged (whether they like it or not!).

Explaining the Benefits of Sustainability

Start with how the company foresees its future in sustainability to help employees understand where the thought process is going. Explain the economic advantage to “going green.” Help your employees gain a better knowledge and competency surrounding global sustainability. Brainstorm the most practical, yet easiest way for the company to start – maybe it is buying recycling bins for every floor of the building. Ultimately, if employees can see how implementing sustainable practices will benefit the company – which will in turn, benefit them – they will be more likely to support it.

Showing Employees You Care

Once employees understand the benefits of being a green business, you can re-inforce the company sustainable direction by getting certified by the Green Business Bureau,   Becoming a member of the Green Business Bureau is the perfect way to demonstrate your commitment and dedication to sustainability. The Green Business Bureau provides members an online assessment and certification program which makes it easy to earn the GBB seal for your website and store. The advantage to getting certified through the Green Business Bureau is the easy-accessibility of it all: completing the certification at your own pace, on your own time. Once a member of the business has completed the online EcoAssessment and earned the respective seal, you can display the tangible seal on the storefront, as well as the clickable seal on any website or social media pages it may have.  This GBB seal is an extraordinary way to catch potential new employee interest as they walk in the door for an interview.   The seal is also a daily reminder to current employees that this company cares about the environment and doing the right things.

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Sustainability Guide for Retail Businesses: Getting Started

Learn about the key first-steps your retail business can take on its greening journey in the first installment of GBBs new Sustainability Guide for Retail Businesses.
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