Business Sustainability Tips for New Startups

Michael Sanduso · September 4, 2017 · Short URL:

What businesses need to know about corporate sustainability

The success rate for new startups is not a very encouraging one. According to Statistic Brain, more than 50 percent of US companies fail within their first five years, and over 70 percent fail after 10 years. Despite such depressing statistics, you can work towards improving the sustainability of your company so it doesn't suffer a wild crash-and-burn scenario after just a few months. If you want longevity for your business, it must be reflected by an agile and transparent business model that aligns with today's startup environment. Here's four tips that can set your business up for long-term success while also minimizing the carbon footprint that your business leaves in the environment.

Bring On Board the Right People

Startups that survive their grueling incubation periods do so because they have the right people on board. Talented professionals who can quickly assess market challenges and needs, tailor an appropriate business plan, and flawlessly execute strategies and decisions can make the difference between life and death of the business. Hire someone who understands the intricate dynamics between a business setting and its environment. In fact, big brands like Qantas have been working with third-party service providers, such as SUEZ, for sustainable waste removal solutions.

Anticipate the Needs of Your Audience

Having the foresight to predict your market's direction and the future needs of your audience are dynamic assets that can win you the lion's share of the market. Leaders must be observant and attentive to any landscape changes and prepare accordingly so they can thrive amidst the disruption.

Take Advantage of Big Data

Everything under the sun is now impacted in some way by big data. For new startups, this has many positive implications. Yet most business owners and startup CEOs usually intentionally overlook big data because of its complexities. But because more and more businesses are adopting big data in their day-to-day operations, choosing not to use it can severely put you at a disadvantage against competitors.

The usefulness of big data lies in the fact that it has the capacity to help startups understand the environmental effects of their business operations and, consequently, execute appropriate responses. Big data also plays a huge role in assessing environmental risks. For instance, one of the tools created using the help of big data is Aqueduct, which is an interactive mapping application that looks for and calculates risks associated with the water in a specific area, using related parameters like the quantity and quality of the water.

Start Small, Aim High

When beginning a new startup in an emerging market or with an unproven business model or product/service line, it's essential to keep your expenses as close to zero as possible. If you have available garage or basement space, use that as a temporary work space rather than leasing an office place. Rather than hiring experienced developers, outsource tasks to freelancers or learn the skills necessary to do those tasks yourself.

Working towards sustainability is something many inexperienced entrepreneurs overlook. Because of the exciting startup vibe and the demand of these businesses to package and execute products and services in unprecedented speeds, many people often lose sight of the forest for the trees. Use the four tips above to cultivate a big picture view and mindset of your newly founded startup.

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Michael Sanduso

Michael Sanduso lives in Toronto, Canada. He is a freelance writer and editor, tech geek, and stay at home father.

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