One of the major stumbling blocks we are currently facing on the road to a more sustainable future is that many companies and industries aren’t doing enough to get on board and make it work.
However, this is not only something that is severely hampering our environmental efforts, but it is also hampering the success of businesses. Here are a few reasons why sustainability should be embraced across all industries.
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One of the biggest challenges in industry sustainability is the concept of Knowing vs Doing. While there are other aspects that need to be improved, this is arguably the biggest factor of them all.
Knowing vs Doing
In simple terms, when it comes to industry leaders and CEOs, many know they need to do more when it comes to sustainability, but they don’t actually do enough. We have all heard many CEOs talk about how they will do more for the environment, only to end up doing just enough so the public can’t say they lied.
This needs to change if industries are to have any real and long-lasting effect on the environment, whether it be using sustainable packaging or simply using less electricity, as speaking about sustainability does nothing while being sustainable makes a world of difference.
Brand Power & Appeal
The first reason more industries should be sustainable is to bring in brand appeal. Many people, especially younger generations, are beginning to care less about what you do and instead how you do it.
More and more people are beginning to get more comfortable with the idea of spending a bit extra on a product if they know it was made sustainably.
Meet Consumer Demands
While customers will spend more on sustainable products, sustainability has moved from a nice extra to a need. Many customers demand that their favourite products are made sustainably to help protect the environment and ensure they aren’t doing damage themselves by using a particular product.
Recent studies have shown that over 80% of customers think businesses should help improve the environment, while over 60% will happily spend more money on sustainable and eco-friendly products.
Many governments and organisations are beginning to make sustainability and sustainable practices laws and fining those who do not work within the guidelines provided. Because of this, some industries are being forced to fall in line.
While this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it is a way for other industries to see what could be heading their way and for them to adapt and change before laws force them to.
Interestingly, being more sustainable has been shown to lower operating costs for many businesses. Being smarter with packaging allows businesses to use less of it and spend less money on making it, for example.
Another example is businesses in countries with air pollution laws have upgraded their vehicles to eco-friendly models, lowering their pollution and saving money on tolls fees they would have needed to pay to enter “Clean Air Zones”.
Creating a sustainability plan can help businesses identify areas where they are using too many resources and spending too much money. Puma famously published their water use and emissions, could spot where they could make improvements, saving a ton of money and streamlining their supply and manufacturing chains.
Attract New Talent
Considering sustainability is almost inevitable at this point, many businesses and industries will need to adopt sustainable practices to stay in the race. Because of this, investors will look to put their money into industries that are staying ahead and setting trends, not falling behind.
Many of them are also looking for new ways to improve sustainability, and being able to hire these young minds will not only give companies the edge over their competitors but will also make them leaders in the sustainability mission.
Considering sustainability is almost inevitable at this point, many businesses and industries will need to adopt sustainable practices to stay in the race. Because of this, investors are going to look to put their money into industries that are staying ahead and setting trends, not falling behind.
Companies on the brink of creating something new and world-changing in the field of sustainability are also more likely to attract new investors, as the enormous potential profits would be too much to ignore.
More and more governments and organisations are looking to reward businesses that become more sustainable. Because of this, brand new opportunities and doors will be opened for business, both big and small.
Each Industry Must Play Their Part
Finally, for sustainability to truly work and succeed, it will take a joint effort across all industries. If you think about it in simple terms, having a stellar recycling system set up is pointless if a company produces products that can’t be recycled.
While this may sound obvious, it is more of the point that businesses shouldn’t feel the need to compete on everything and instead work together on the sustainability side of things and be competitive when it comes to design, improvements, etc.