BE Blogs: A Voice for Responsible Business

As part of our sustainability pledge to discuss best practices openly and honestly, we share insights that allow others to effect change in their community. While companies have responsibility to drive change internally, we believe they also can add to their insights and impact by sharing their experience with others.

Come by often to read the latest news, subscribe to our blog via email or RSS reader. Even better, join the conversation and share your ideas on how business can be a force for good in your community and environment.

How Smart Companies Save Money (and the Planet)

Oct 29, 2012   //   by Bradley Short   //   Blog, Energy, Technology, The Environment  //  No Comments

I read an HBR post this morning called “How Smart Cities Save Money (and the Planet).” As I read it, I realized that if you you were to replace “Cities” with “Companies,” you can pretty much make the same argument for many fast-growth companies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the post, Michael J. Dixon of IBM wrote, “…today a city’s success should be measured by how wisely it uses energy, water, and other resources, how well it maintains a high quality of life for its people, and how smart it is in building prosperity on a sustainable foundation. In short, cities have to become much smarter about how they use existing capacity and resources.

Now, let me replace “cities” with “companies” and “citizens” with “employees and stakeholders.”

“Today a company’s success should be measured by how wisely it uses energy, water, and other resources, how well it maintains a high quality of life for its employees and stakeholders, and how smart it is in building prosperity on a sustainable foundation. In short, companies have to become much smarter about how they use existing capacity and resources.

Pretty compelling stuff, right?  At its core, any business has the imperative to use all of its resources efficiently to create value.  Any business that can effectively understand and act on its own resource use data will be able to grow and be far more successful than one that doesn’t.

Take a look at the whole article over on HBR.org and after you’ve read it, think about how some of the same data-driven “smart growth” is relevant for growing businesses, just like it is for cities.

Corporate Sustainability is NOT a Political Issue

Jan 11, 2012   //   by Bradley Short   //   Energy, Leadership, Regulation, Social Entrepreneurship, The Environment  //  No Comments

At this contentious time in American politics, it seems like just about everything is becoming a political issue.  Sustainability, sadly, hasn’t been spared the wrath of heated political rhetoric.

The ongoing debate about issues like federal subsidies, climate change mitigation, and natural gas fracking might make corporate sustainability look like a politically divisive thing.  But that’s simply not the case.  Corporate sustainability is as mainstream as it gets, so you’d better commit your company to a greener future if you want to remain competitive in the years to come.

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Hot Potatoes Prove Sustainability is About More Than Renewables and Recycling

Apr 6, 2011   //   by Bradley Short   //   Blog, Marketing & Communication, Operations Management, The Environment  //  No Comments

I read this BusinessWeek article yesterday and it really got me thinking about the state of environmental money saving. It talks about a profoundly unique solution to a difficult to see problem, and it really makes a great case for an environmental corporate focus.  Unfortunately, the ideas in this article are often missing in day-to-day sustainability conversation. Traditional green dialogue (focusing exclusively on efficiency and the like) can perpetuate a discourse that, pardon the expression, can’t see the forest for the trees.
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