Why business sustainability starts with mindset

By Henry Brown

Sustainability is something that every business thinks about now, but it’s not just about incorporating sustainable practices, but about making sure that sustainability becomes a mindset. The fact is that sustainability is something that everybody has formed different interpretations of. For some people, sustainability means using practices that aren’t to the detriment of the planet, but others talk about ethics and corporate responsibility. So does every business need a sustainability mindset?

Why sustainable business practices should be the default setting

While there isn’t one correct way to become sustainable, businesses can benefit from combining different practices to form a solid sustainable business strategy. Firstly, companies have to have the ability to follow certain regulations in terms of energy efficiency or human rights and then implement additional changes to their business to improve their operational efficiency. A good example would be in how they look after their data. Having a strategy in place to dispose of data in the right way through document shredding services will make a big difference. But every company needs to make the promise to deliver in their approaches to sustainability. This is where it becomes part of the core values, and therefore, the mindset.

What can a business do to start a sustainability mindset?

Everybody can start a different way, but we have to set realistic goals. It’s important for any business to create strategies that will work for you. The three key areas of sustainability are not necessarily to do with recycling or managing data, but can come from the following three areas:

Building customer relations

Loyalty is vital for any business. When consumers find a sustainable one, they are more likely to purchase products from them. So if you can work on increasing your sustainability for the benefit of your customers, this is going to have a positive knock-on effect.

Encouraging innovative practices

If you want to implement more sustainability models and keep your productivity high, you have got to be more creative. Sustainability can refer to designing greener packaging and products, improving the supply chain in more ethical ways, and the list goes on. Innovation should be part of the culture, therefore, having regular brainstorming sessions with your team can give you insight into how your business can work towards a sustainability model.

Having an effective approach to risk management

Businesses need to identify the threats to their earnings. Many risks come from irresponsible behaviors. For example, a data breach can highlight a lack of trust in an organization. Therefore, businesses could benefit from learning the benefits of data conservation with more robust practices. When you are defining your business strategy, you need to look at the opportunity cost and imagine what you could either gain or lose from incorporating alternative approaches. Because if you don’t implement sustainable practices, you may lose revenue to a competitor that has already made these changes.

A business needs a sustainable mindset, therefore having something in place to get you started is vital. It’s not something that you can perfect right away, but having the right mindset is going to give you a solid foundation.


Henry Brown is an online marketing executive. When he isn’t talking shop, he’s roaming the streets of London, uncovering the extra-ordinary in the ordinary.

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