The primary aim of sustainability is to take care of existing/present needs. However, it also takes up the responsibility of saving something for the usage of future generations. This means that the current and future generations have access to similar environmental, social, and economic benefits. Thus, the creation of a perfect balance today sustains for the future too.
Surprisingly, only a few businesses have clarity about this concept and the rest harbors all kinds of misconceptions.
1. Sustainability is the Government’s responsibility.
There is this global tendency to leave everything to the care of governments of the nations! After all, corporate or businesses have enough to do without worrying about sustainability too. What the latter do not realize is that every bit helps.
2. Environmental sustainability has nothing to do with profits/losses.
Commercial enterprises feel that they should focus on profits and nothing else. They need not concern themselves with whether the environment sustains or not. They must comprehend that their survival has a link to the survival of natural resources and the environment.
3. The concept of sustainability is just a fad.
Some organizations continue to believe that environmental sustainability is just a passing trend. They feel that it will die out over time. However, this is not true. It will continue to exist. Therefore, corporate social responsibility should become an integral part of modern business operations.
4. Green businesses will not affect climate change.
The world deems climate change to be an issue of significant concern. Regardless, several business owners feel that their contribution is too small to make any substantial difference. It is high time that they understood how they can adopt strategies to reduce the carbon footprint.
5. Environmental sustainability is an expensive business.
The initial investments in renewable sources of energy tend to be on the expensive side. However, maintenance costs are minimal. This is something that companies do not realize.
6. Investors in business enterprises could not care less.
Business owners feel that investors will not even look at them if they harp on sustainability and not on profits and balance sheets! However, many concerned investors do keep the sustainability factor in mind when deciding whether to link up with a company or not.
7. Customers will refuse to pay extra for sustainability products.
There is no denying that green products carry higher price labels. This makes business owners balk at offering them to consumers. However, if they are determined to do so, it should not prove too difficult to convince consumers that green practices are healthy.
8. It is hard to make employees engage in sustainable business practices.
Business owners tend to give up without even trying! They refuse to believe that employees will care about sustainability. They may refuse to be productive and loyal since sustainable practices will not enhance incomes.
9. Spending time on setting sustainability mission, values, and goals serve no purpose at all.
Business owners, who focus on gains or losses all the time, feel that they should not divert employees from focusing on the fulfillment of organizational objectives. What businesses do not realize is that ethical values automatically direct employees to be more diligent in fulfilling business goals.
10. Engaging employees in sustainability practices is an unnecessary expenditure.
Once again, some business owners feel that too much time may go into training employees in the arena of sustainable practices. However, it is possible that the incorporation of such practices across the company will improve the brand’s image, instead.
11. There are too many establishments engaged in sustainable development already.
Numerous environmental agencies across the globe spend a vast amount of time on improving the record of global sustainability. Therefore, why should businesses also talk about or create reports about sustainable development? Since they are not experts, the world does not need their help. However, this is not true. The world always looks forward to novel viewpoints.
12. It is hard to monitor the supply chain.
Ensuring that the supply chain follows sustainable practices from beginning to end is not an easy task. Sustainability consulting firms prove handy for monitoring everything. However, few companies want to incur additional expenses. The scenario will change only when they comprehend how important sustainable audits are for preserving natural resources.
13. Only big organizations can afford sustainability-consulting firms.
These firms take charge of assessments, reports, inventories, and strategic planning. Naturally, they demand remuneration for their experience and expertise. Small and medium-sized businesses feel that they cannot afford the expense. It is time they realized that this massive initial investment would yield great results eventually.
14. My definition of sustainability is the correct one.
Every business seems to have its definition of sustainability. It even feels that others understand and appreciate this definition! However, real, sustainable development is possible when all commercial enterprises award an ordinary definition/meaning to the concept of sustainability.