Platt Perspective on Business and Technology

Building a business from a Green foundation – Green and sustainable context and the Green marketplace

Posted in social networking and business, strategy and planning by Timothy Platt on September 19, 2010

This is my fifth posting in a series on building Green and sustainable businesses and organizations from the inside out and my first three focused on the Green and sustainable infrastructure with:

1. Avoiding the Green Gimmick Trap,
2. Cultivating the Green Aware Employee and
3. Building from a Green Strategy Imperative.

I finally turned to the issue of products and services that are sent out the door and into the marketplace with posting four:

4. Building for Green Products and Services

and my goal is to connect the internal-to-the-organization valuation of Green and sustainable as a source of competitive edge from increased efficiency, to the values and valuation of Green and sustainability as more commonly held in the larger community.

The larger community focuses on the larger context of climate and environment, and of making rational long term decisions regarding natural resources and their use. This approach focuses on sustainable quality of life and protection of our planet’s biodiversity. And on the negative side it focuses on waste and inefficiencies that lead to global warming and a range of other quality of life limiting problems.

Calvin Coolidge is commonly attributed as stating “What’s good for Business is good for America.” That may or not be true and it may or may not have ever been true but in a fundamental sense it can legitimately be stated that what is good for business is good for the environment and for supporting effective Green and sustainability initiatives for protecting it. Quite simply, short term corner cutting at the expense of long term sustainability is long term very bad for business. Old smokestack industries that pollute cannot compete in the open marketplace with their newer and more efficient counterparts and environmentally inefficient and damaging approaches and processes can only lead to dead end rust belt businesses and industries. Long term and even relatively short term, what is good for the environment and what is sustainably so is both good and necessary for business and what is sustainable and value creating for businesses has to acknowledge this as a core component of its underlying strategy and its expressed infrastructure.

And this leads me to the core topic of this posting, and one of the overall goals of this series as a whole. Simply stating this deep and sustaining connection between larger-picture environmentally focused Green and sustainability on the one hand and business efficiency on the other is important. This is a necessary first step. But this is simply a first step. And as I have discussed throughout this series up to now, this acknowledgment in action as well as word has to start from the inside and with strategy and planning and with process-driven business infrastructures and work out from there, through production and distribution of products and services that are Green from the core outward and into the marketplace. And as I stated with posting one of this series, satisfy yourself with anything short of that and you face the possibility that you be labeled in your marketplace as only offering superficially valuable gimmicks and not sources of sustaining value through your products and services.

And with this I in effect complete a circle, or rather a spiral leading outward from the inner workings of the Green and sustainable organization through its infrastructure and to its products and service, and now to the marketplace and communities it exists and functions in.

I will come back to further discuss Green and sustainability in future postings.

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