Having a sustainable business model is a win-win situation for your business and for society. With environmental problems like carbon footprint, pollution, and climate change taking a toll on the world, the demand for eco-responsible products and sustainable packaging is bigger than ever. A sustainable business model will let you stay ahead of uprising trends in customer preferences and allow you to make a long-term positive impact on nature. These steps towards eco-friendliness are taking you closer to being an exemplary brand and building a loyal client base with similar values. Read our article to see why today creating a sustainable business model is more important than ever.
Sustainable business models consist of three pillars - social, environmental, and economic:
● The social pillar is about caring for the people working for the company, by eliminating inequality and providing fair working conditions;
● Environmental pillar is about reducing and minimizing the footprint and negative impact manufacturing, logistics, and business operations have on nature and climate change;
● Economical pillar is about running the company efficiently to drive profit while embracing sustainability practices.
In general, a sustainable business should be able to deliver value without depleting any natural, social, and environmental capital. Adopting this business model helps companies meet present needs and turn a profit without neglecting the demands of the next generations.
A sustainable business model works because is profitable, embraces the concept of responsible consumption, relies on renewable resources and sustainable practices, and creates a long-lasting value.
The negative effects of climate change are more and more noticeable. And while it may seem it is up to the separate individuals to make a positive impact, sustainability actions would have a bigger impact if acting as a group. Clients and businesses together for a better future.
Making business decisions and taking actions to slow down climate change and lower company footprint is at the core of the sustainable business model. This is what sustainable businesses are all about - using environmentally-friendly practices to gain a competitive advantage, whilst protecting the environment.
A sustainable business model will also address problems such as income inequality. That causes not only social disruptions in the professional and personal setting but also affects the environment. Income inequality has a negative environmental impact on waste generation, water consumption, resource depletion, and biodiversity.
Sustainable practices help develop fair and transparent payment structures. Moreover, adopting a sustainable business model increases economic inclusion, stimulates work processes, and provides higher income.
Packaging is one of the biggest pollutants on Earth. More specifically the plastic waste from packaging. It cannot be composted, nor it can be safely disposed of (except for recycling). However, bear in mind some types of plastic are non-recyclable.
That means plastic waste would eventually end up in the oceans or in a landfill. Breaking down would take hundreds of years, meaning the packaging litter would be polluting the environment and potentially hurting wildlife.
The alternative is adopting a sustainable business model and eco-friendly packaging practices. Some of the sustainable approaches to thinking about include the use of renewable materials (sourced naturally).
These materials should be reusable, compostable or/and recyclable, and under the right conditions - able to fully disintegrate in a few months, without polluting the environment.
When it comes to pollution, we have to mention footprint as well. Without a sustainable business model, your business is most likely to contribute to air pollution during the process of manufacture, transportation, or other operations.
Embracing a sustainable business model could turn the table in your and nature’s favor. By adopting more eco-aware practices you can reduce your carbon footprint and even neutralize it to some extent.
Lack of natural resources is another pressing environmental problem. The only way to prevent and slow down resource depletion is for brands to embrace sustainability practices. That includes utilizing, reusing, and even sourcing materials smarter.
For instance, using only renewable sources and reusable materials in your products and packaging. As well as optimizing the life cycle of products by promoting recycling practices and composting (for food and organic packaging).
Another reason businesses need sustainable business models more than ever is to provide a healthier environment for their employees and stimulate loyalty. Unfair working conditions are a common reason for lack of productivity and staff losing interest or getting irresponsible with work processes.
In general, poor working conditions contribute to poor performance. What a sustainable business model could do is find the perfect balance between fair conditions and employer satisfaction.
There are three steps to begin your journey to becoming a sustainable business. The first one is to utilize renewable resources and plan out their usage. The second step is to engage employees and encourage them to embrace the new practices. And lastly, prepare your customers for the positive change in your business model.
Select the raw materials you need for your products and their packaging. Take into consideration where you can source them, how they are being transported, how far they have to travel to reach your warehouse. Try to source locally, make big orders, and cut down on fuel as much as possible.
Next, think about your manufacturing and operational processes. See if you can use fewer raw materials to make a product of the same quality. Distinguish the most wasteful work procedures and decide how to lessen their negative effects. Opt to replace your least sustainable materials with eco-responsible alternatives and find a way to reuse or recycle production waste material.
Investing in sustainable and biodegradable packaging is an important step towards becoming a sustainable business. With that in mind, pick a provider that is already eco-oriented and will contribute to your sustainability mission.
The best way to make a sustainable business model work is to have all people involved in company processes embrace sustainability and co-create the new practices. This can be done by preaching corporate values, defining long-term goals, and educating staff on the advantages of sustainable practices.
Transforming a business from wasteful to sustainable is comes at a price that sometimes is for the expense of the clients. That is completely normal, and so is preparing your customers for the big change in your values and mission. Paying more for sustainability is worth it and clients would be understanding. Just convey your message and start discussions about sustainability. Let clients resonate with your business on a whole new level.
Are you ready to become a sustainable business? Start with your packaging. Packlion is here to provide you with eco-friendly, affordable, and sustainable alternatives to plastic packaging. Get in touch with our packaging professionals for advice and expert opinion.