Corporate Sustainability: A Changing Corporate Model (Pay Attention Small Business)
(Pay Attention Small Business
Morning coffee can sometimes be a challenge when the news hits you over the head with corporate environmental atrocities. It can make you wonder if anyone is getting the message. Sometimes it is just the problem of news companies touting negativity for the sake of viewership rather than concentrating on the innovators, progresses and overall abiding citizens that are at the forefront of corporate environmental change. Be careful where you get your news and keep your eyes open for future corporate responsibility that is integrating sustainable practices into a new business model that is proving a win-win for the planet.
Corporate sustainability is often assumed to be a forced response to guidelines, restrictions and other government mandated requirements. However, in many cases, this term is becoming the conspicuous or underlying mission statement of many progressive corporations. This is mainly due to the fact that it has been shown, in many models throughout the last decade, to greatly determine the future of a corporation’s success. Some progressive points corporate sustainability can experience if addressed in a conscientious, accountable and forward thinking way include:
- Positive fiscal consumer response to a deviation from unproductive, environmentally unfriendly, traditional practices which include but are not limited to: vendors, manufacturers, overseas production (including human rights) and a variety of sustainable materials as well as recycling, CO2 control and LEED certification status.
- More transparency
- Market growth
- Stakeholder engagement
- Competitive advantage
- Future overhead reduction
2013 Trends for Corporate Sustainable Action
Throughout this year there is predicted to be rapid trend growth regarding corporate sustainable practices. The current political situation is showing more initial hope than previously expected during the 2012 election campaign. Some 2013 trends may be:
Water Footprint Mapping (WFM) – Many already realize that oil is not as problematic as the future of usable water resources. By practicing WFM, corporations can create future plans of water conservation to sustain production operations.
B2B Collaboration – Strength in numbers is becoming more apparent than ever. Businesses, big and small, will continue to work side by side from group efforts in green productivity to a joint eco-positive ad campaign.
Embracing Social Media – Another realization is the social media. As more corporations embrace this important medium (being careful not to use it as a sales platform) they have the potential to see a huge, positive, consumer response.
Employee Incentives – If green practices are taught and implemented into entry level staff, monetary incentives from eventual saved income can be added to paychecks.
Green Symposiums for Corporate Sustainability – More educational think tanks will emerge within symposiums, lectures, science and more giving involved corporations an ‘eco-leg-up’ on their non-green competition.
Exposing and Eliminating “Green Washing” – False green claims can throw a wrench into reputable practices. Part of the aforementioned transparency point of corporate sustainability is to do away with this untoward business practice.
There is hope yet and it is in the form of corporate sustainability. As long as consumers keep demanding change, industry will follow.