How to Make Your Business More Green

By Stefanie Neyland, Small Business Content and Online Marketing at

If you run a small business that consists of only a few employees, you may be wondering what your company can do to be more green. You may not have the capital to invest in costly eco-measures such as solar panels, ground source heat pumps and environmentally-friendly insulation, so what else can you do? Surely switching off a light or two and cutting back on unnecessary packaging won’t really make a difference?

Well, the truth is: it will. You may have heard the phrase ‘every little helps’, but in this case it actually does. If every business were to take some simple, easy and above all – effective – measures, the positive impact on the planet would be significant. Here are five ways you can green your small business, helping make it more sustainable while saving the planet.

Start small, think big
Begin your eco-drive with small gestures. Consider launching an office recycling program or simply switching to energy efficient light bulbs which consume less power than traditional bulbs. Initiatives such as these are foolproof ways to ease employees into a green frame of mind, and will encourage them to get on board with future eco-plans.

Heat and cool smarter

Heating and cooling costs are perhaps the most significant source of energy consumption for businesses. Try timing your heat or air conditioning to come on shortly before employees arrive in the office and arrange for it be switched off a little while after they leave. Also be selective about which spaces you’re heating; think twice before cranking up the thermostat in that meeting room which only gets used once in a blue moon.

Implement a waste recycling program
Recycling is a fundamental element to any company’s eco-push. Heard of the slogan ‘reduce, reuse and recycle’? Ensure that these words form the basis of all your eco initiatives. If you don’t already, try separating your waste by providing clearly labelled or colour-coded garbage containers to allow your employees to quickly and easily dispose of their recyclables correctly. By doing this, your business will be sending less refuse to landfill sites, and in turn you’ll be helping the planet.

Recycle and reuse office equipment and electronics

In addition to recycling your office waste, you can also recycle your everyday office equipment. In 2013, Staples expanded their electronics drop-off program in its retail locations and now accepts PDAs, cell phones, computers, computer parts and more. They also accept ink and toner cartridges at every store location in Canada. Alternatively, if your computer is outdated but not ready to give up the ghost just yet, consider refurbishing it instead – why dispose of a good machine and spend unnecessary cash when a simply recondition may suffice?

Cut back on water consumption
Between kitchens and washrooms, the average business goes through substantial amounts of water each and every day. By installing low-flow toilets or automated faucets, you’ll not only be cutting back on your company’s water consumption, but also preparing for future rises in water rates.

By Adam

April 25, 2013