2) Take inventory: Monitor your business activities so you can keep a log on how money is spent. Although it’s timely, measure the amount of water, energy and other resources your business uses. This can be done by walking around your place of business and taking an account of assets and materials used, suggests Kaplan. She adds reviewing your bills and accounting records to see both the number and the dollar amounts spent on line item goods and services as well as assembling a list of all your business expenses by dollar amounts in descending order will help.
3) Formulate a practical plan: Going green is an ongoing process so start small. After seeing how the business is spending its money and reviewing both the opportunities and challenges you face, you’ll have a better sense of where to start. Create a set of objectives and prioritize implementing them. Great tip: start by constructing an environmentally friendly mission statement.
4) Go paperless whenever possible: There’s a lot of paperwork that goes into running a business, but you can still handle business without the paper pileup. Digitize documents by scanning or PDF formatting them; send invoices and documents by email. Encourage others to do the same by inserting a “save paper” message in your email signature. If you do need to use paper, be mindful of how much paper your utilizing. Try setting the default to two-sided on the copier, eliminate cover sheets when faxing or using Arial Narrow font—this lessens your printed page area by nearly 15%.
5) “Reduce, reuse and recycle”: Look into reusing products or materials that are refillable, repaired or refurbished. When it comes to office supplies, recycle as many as possible. Instead of throwing paper in with the regular trash opt to put it in the recycling bin. Place clearly labeled recycling bins throughout the establishment so that it’s not an afterthought, but a priority.
6) Buy green: Start by buying local. You’re not only supporting your local economy, but also cutting out the monetary and environmental cost associated with transportation. Go for vendors that have environmental policies in place (i.e., look for the Energy Star label).
7) Adopt an environmentally conscious marketing approach: Go digital when spreading your marketing message. Get rid of hard copies and create electronic versions of items such as media kits or newsletters; make them accessible on your site or via email. To cut down on mailing, keep your mailing lists updated to eliminate the undeliverable and duplicate addresses.
8)Lights out when it comes to saving energy: At the close of business, turn off lights, computers and monitors. When you can, replace current light bulbs with high-efficiency bulbs. Not only does shutting down your computer save energy, but it’s stopping the risk of having your computer hacked.
9) Follow thegreen light when it comes to travel: If you can opt out of travelling, teleconference or web conference instead. When traveling out of town, take the train—it’s more efficient that automobile or air travel. Rent a small car and car pool to business meetings, if possible. If that’s not an option, mass transit is.