By Thomas C. Sheffield

It won’t be easy but it is possible

The road may be tough to become sustainable, but the journey is worth it. There are so many distractions we all face. But we must keep our focus and not lose sight on the prize of a sustainable business and lifestyle.

If you are in business, please do not forget millennials (People born between 1980-2000) are demanding more environmental and socially sound products. A Morgan Stanley report says that millennials are twice as likely to buy from brands with good management of environmental and social issues and are twice as likely to check packaging for sustainability performance.

Here are some thoughts to allow you to become more attractive to millennials.

We must always be mindful of the trends. More and more, consumers are choosing brands and are doing business with businesses that have a shared sense of purpose. Millennials are looking to do business with companies that exercise best environmental practices. These practices show in a company’s bottom line and they publish these plans on their web sites. There are plenty of examples of this. Companies such as Apple, Whole Foods, Walmart and Target continue to find value in sustainable initiatives. If they can do it, then shouldn’t you? Practicing these simple acts will save money and make your business more attractive to millennials.

Millennials are also more aware of business transparency. Members of this tech-savvy group now have access to how you run your business. They have access to information on who you do business with and what is in the products you sell. Studies show millennials are more likely to purchase goods and services with good business practices than just price. Not only are there web sites, there are apps people use to decide where to spend their money.

There are some easy fixes every company can make in order to become more sustainable. You may look for ways to eliminate waste. You may wish to look at options nature provides when it comes to lighting or heating/cooling your business. There may be products out there that you are not using that could save even more money and allow you to make more. The talent of your employees may not be used in the best way to gain a competitive advantage. These missed opportunities should be discovered to bring value to your company because they show investors that you are able to identify and take advantage of opportunities that are present.

The road to a sustainable business is not an easy one but it is a rewarding journey. I challenge you to think differently about how you do business. I challenge you to leverage your assets to your advantage. I challenge you to look at the trends in your industry and adapt to them.

(Thomas C. Sheffield owns Nashville-based Thom Sustainable Consultants. Contact him at thomsustainableconsulting@gmail.com. Visit thomsustainableconsulting.com. Follow @tcsheff.)