Embracing Earth Day: 5 Ways to Have a More Eco Friendly Business

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 Done  By 5 Blog, "Embracing Earth Day: 5 Ways to Have a More Eco Friendly Small Business." Virtual Assistants for Small Business. San Francisco Bay Area. 

Happy Earth Day! At Done By 5 we love Earth Day! It is the one day that people across the world come together and celebrate the beautiful planet we all share and call home. Not only is it a day to get up, get out, and enjoy the outdoors, it is a reminder that we only have one place to call home and we must take care of it.

For small businesses, Earth Day is a good reminder of how small and local can still have a huge impact. You have the power to make changes in how you operate your business and model choices to really make a difference in the community you live and work in. Being eco friendly doesn't mean completely restructuring your business model, there are many small, simple shifts that can produce significant results, and also help save you money!

In the spirit of Earth Day, The Done By 5 team has put a list of 5 changes/ways you can make in your business (and even personal life) to be more green.

5 Ways to Have a More Eco Friendly Small Business

 Done By 5 Blog graphic. LED Light  Bulbs=Saving the Planet + Saving Money. Virtual Assistants for Small Business, San Francisco Bay Area
  1. LED Light Bulbs- Did you know that LED light bulbs are 80% more efficient than incandescent bulbs and can last up to 10 years? LED light bulbs are a small change that make a HUGE difference! They reduce waste by changing them less frequently and they use less energy (which saves on your energy bill!)  LED Light Bulbs = Saving the Planet + Saving Money
  2. Go Paperless- Going paperless (or at least reducing paper waste) can happen on many levels of your business, (some are easier than others). But even just reducing how much waste you produce goes a long way.
    • Digital Files- Turn all documents into paper files. Using an app like Tiny Scanner  can make this conversion quick and easy. Then upload to a cloud based storage platform, like G Suite with Google Drive, can keep them safe and easily accessible and shareable. Going digital also helps you save space and avoid clutter which is always a plus!

    • Digital Receipts- Switch to a point of sale system like Square that no only keeps digital copies of all your transaction, but sends digital receipts. We love this idea not only because it reduces waste (most of us just throw those receipts away or lose them) but it is also a great way to keep records for the tax man!

    • Go bagless- If you have a retail store, go bagless or incentivize your customers BYOB (Bring Your Own Bag). You can have your customers use not only reusable shopping bags but there are also reusable bags for produce or other “bulk” items. This is also a great marketing opportunity, make your own reusable bags with your awesome logos to sell and get your brand out there even more as an eco friendly small business.

    • Go bagless- If you have a retail store, go bagless or incentivize your customers BYOB (Bring Your Own Bag). You can have your customers use not only reusable shopping bags but there are also reusable bags for produce or other “bulk” items. This is also a great marketing opportunity, make your own reusable bags with your awesome logos to sell and get your brand out there even more as an eco friendly small business.

  3. Avoid Plastic Waste- This year’s Earth Day Network campaign is to end plastic waste and small businesses are the perfect place to start. We have become so dependent on plastic as a cheap resource, so that is can be a little intimidating to take on. The best piece of advice is to start small. We have listed some ways you and your small business can help reduce plastic waste.

  4. Kitchenette- If the space is available have a small kitchenette with a sink and a bamboo dish rack (a dishwasher would be awesome as well) for your employees stocked with ceramic or glass plates, cups, and metal utensils. Having all these reusable items easily available will keep your employees from grabbing plastic cutlery and turning to paper plates.

  5. Support Eco Friendly Businesses- Being eco friendly can be a bit more costly than not, so this is a very important step. Support businesses that have Eco Friendly business practices to help ensure their longevity. Not only should you patronize them but you should also recommend them to your customers.  

 
 Done By Blog, "BYOB: Bring Your Own Bag" Blog Graphic. Virtual Assistants Small Business. San Francisco Bay Area.
 

BONUS! Hire a Virtual Assistant- There's so much back office work that can be done remotely. Hiring a virtual assistant (like the team at Done By 5) does a couple eco friendly things for you and your small business: it encourages you to be digital and avoid paper waste, it reduces carbon waste by keeping unnecessary commuters off the road, and it gives you more free time to focus your energy into the parts of your business you love AND gets you back to enjoying what Earth Day is all about!

 
 Done By 5 Blog, Quote from Sidney Sheldon, Earth Day, Virtual Assistants for Small Business, San Francisco Bay Area.
 

The changes that we make to be more eco friendly don’t have to be big, the small changes can make a big, lasting impact. Making these small changes and picking up new habits will go along way. In the words of Sidney Sheldon, “Try to leave Earth a better place than when you arrived.”

 Done By 5 Blog, Earth Day. Virtual Assistants for Small Business, San Francisco Bay Area. 
 

In what ways is your business eco friendly? What changes or practices do you want to adopt to make your business more eco friendly?