Sustainability is one of the biggest corporate buzzwords of the decade, and if you’ve been hearing about it on webinars or around the boardroom table lately you may be wondering if it’s here to stay.
The commercial property sector has adopted green office space and green buildings wholeheartedly around the world, with hundreds of office complexes receiving Green Building Council certification over the past two decades. Yet, sustainability goes beyond the structure of your office premises.
Sustainable business is a philosophy that every successful business will need to incorporate in all aspects of its operations in the years to come.
In this article, we take a look at the broadest meaning of sustainability – sustainability as a way of life and work – and how you can incorporate this thinking into your business planning, including your choice of a commercial space.
Sustainability means business – it’s a philosophy
We’re all living in times of great uncertainty with the pandemic still a prolonged disruptor in our personal lives and in the business environment. In the same breath, we are also dealing with economic instability, climate change, and most recently a major war on Europe’s doorstep.
To survive and thrive in a century that seems to be throwing a lot of threats our way, we will need to adopt a new way of thinking that puts collective prosperity and environmental renewal at the heart of everything we do.
As a business owner, it can be tempting to think only in terms of profit and loss. The numbers are always important, but it’s equally vital to do business in a way that ensures that society will still be able to prosper in the decades to come.
This sense of sustainability means more than just environmental friendliness – it’s an approach to planning and executing business decisions with the interests of everyone involved in mind.
Here are some ways you can make your business more sustainable and profitable in the years to come.
Focus on an industry that does no harm
- Industries that produce pollution and rely on cheap labour for their profitability are likely to come under increasing attack from government legislators in the decades to come.
- Mining, traditional agriculture, and dirty manufacturing will need to make major changes in order to survive.
By focusing on your products and services that don’t result in environmental degradation, you’ll be doing a good thing for the planet and making things a lot easier for yourself as you navigate the post-pandemic economy.
Hire talent for the long term with your values in mind
A sustainable business needs to have a stable team. Having high financial turnover is great, but a high staff turnover is particularly bad for team morale.
Some turnover of staff is always necessary, but an excessively high turnover can be disruptive and is something you want to avoid as much as possible as it can rob your company of valuable skills in the long term.
Incorporating sustainability in your HR policy is so much more than simply securing the top graduates or high-performing experts who look great on paper. HR plays a pivotal role in implementing the sustainable practices of a business that is trying to reshape policies.
Hiring people who are a good fit for your company’s values and future goals and ingraining the company’s sustainable practices into a new employee’s vision of the company from day one, can affect the way employees feel about working for your company.
A successful HR policy in the post-pandemic world helps employees to feel at home when they’re at the office. A holistic approach that considers the needs and comfort requirements of team members and makes these readily available could be a powerful competitive advantage for your business. Here are some factors to consider:
- Find out what they need. A survey or series of informal meetings with your team will help you understand their work environment preferences.
- Emphasise comfort and collaboration. Remote working team members come to the office to connect. Creating inviting spaces with comfortable seating, coffee, and digital connectivity will give them a great reason to be there.
- Make the commute a pleasure. Choosing a location that’s easy to reach and close to public transportation links will make your premises an even more appealing destination for your team members.
Find a sustainable base for your business to thrive
Sustainability may be more than glass, steel, bricks and mortar, but the commercial property that you choose for your business can have a huge impact on your employees’ motivation level and the perception that clients have about your business.
Green buildings are environmentally sustainable and cost less to manage and maintain and are typically built with the broader wellbeing of the surrounding community in mind. This means that local builders, materials suppliers, interior designers, and construction workers play a part in the building and renovation of the premises. The result is a sustainable, connected community with a bigger heart and a smaller carbon footprint.
Choosing a premises that was constructed on green principles is a key step toward sustainability. Many of the premium office spaces in our portfolio of properties across the Cape Peninsula offer all of these sustainable features and are ideal for businesses that are gearing up to reopen fully in 2022.
The Commercial Space team has successfully placed thousands of tenants in modern, environmentally sustainable office units across the Cape Peninsula. Contact us today and let us know how we can help you find the perfect premises for your business.