ESG CONSIDERATIONS FOR SMALL BUSINESSES
Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) issues have become an important concern for consumers, businesses, and investors worldwide. Every business-big or small should consider incorporating ESG. It’s not an exaggeration to say that we’re in the midst of a revolution—one where businesses are no longer solely judged by their financial prowess but also by their commitment to the Environment, Social, and Governance. This is the heart of ESG! ESG isn’t just an acronym; it is a compass guiding businesses toward a future where profitability corresponds with responsibility.
According to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), any organization with fewer than 500 employees is a small business, while anything above that is a large business. This might definitely sum up to almost all companies admitting to being small businesses; whichever way, ESG isn’t yet officially regulated for small businesses, regardless, things are slowly moving in that direction.
In today’s world, consumers are no longer passive purchasers; they’re discerning individuals who expect businesses to take accountability for their environmental footprints. This gradual shift in consumer behaviour means that embracing ESG is not just a moral obligation; it’s also a strategic imperative.
Including ESG in your business essentially means becoming an organization that is focused on purpose and values. And that matters to employees and consumers. ESG practices, when implemented effectively, can lead to reduced operating costs. The steps to chipping ESG into your small business are as simple as:
- Create an ESG team: made up of employees who are passionate about change, who can implement the changes, and well as be accountable for meeting the ESG goals.
- Be Intentional in your supply chain choice: Engage vendors with reference to environmental standards and evidence of good practices of sustainable products
- Reduce Carbon Footprint: Conserve energy usage within the workplace, by reducing your carbon footprint, your business can become more energy-efficient.
- Customer Engagement and Satisfaction: deliver excellent services or products
- Communicate your Progress: Transparency and openness are at the heart of ESG, share updates on social media platforms, and staff newsletters to update customers on how you are performing as well as the ongoing ESG initiatives.
A workplace with a strong ESG focus and great work culture becomes a magnet for top talent. According to a survey by IBM, 68% of engaged reported that they were more likely to apply for, and 69% more likely to accept, positions from environmentally sustainable companies. The same survey revealed that 62% of consumers expressed willingness to change their purchasing behavior to help reduce negative impact on the environment. Engaged employees thrive in an atmosphere of trust and shared values, leading to increased productivity.
You should cling to the ESG Journey as well!
As we navigate this transformative journey together, let’s remember that ESG isn’t just about sustainability; it’s about building resilient businesses for a sustainable future.
Thank you for being part of the “Sustainability Spotlight” community, where we shed light on the path toward a better, and more sustainable future.