By Guest Author, *Joyce Wilson
Note from Cheryl: For those unfamiliar with the term, according to Green Business Bureau, “An ‘ecopreneur’ is an entrepreneur focused on creating and selling environmentally-friendly products and services. Ecopreneurship is a new way of doing business – a way to create sustainable business models, and work together with (and for) the environment.” Below Joyce has written “a quick-start introduction to “ECOpreneurship” – or “how to start a business that saves the planet”.
Proven Tips and Resources for Aspiring Ecopreneurs
More and more businesses are going green these days. And that’s a great thing because it’s a sign that more people are becoming conscious of human impact on the environment. But there’s a lot more work to be done. And ideally, every business would structure its operations around a green business model.
Many entrepreneurs are intimidated by the prospect of adopting sustainable, environmentally friendly practices, but there are countless ways to reduce a company’s carbon footprint and foster the health of the planet—from using recycled paper to employing smart building technologies. If you’re thinking about becoming an ecopreneur, consider these practical tips and
resources from Hot Springs Village People.
Brainstorm Business Ideas
The first step is to research and make a list of possible green business ideas that could bring a profit. Here are some ideas to get you started:
● Opening an eco-friendly retail store—either eCommerce or brick-and-mortar—that sells locally sourced products.
● Growing an organic garden to sell fruits and vegetables at farmers’ markets and other local grocery stores.
● Starting a green finance business that supports sustainable projects, organizations, and artists in the community.
● Opening an environmentally friendly salon that sells organic and vegan hair products.
Lay a Foundation
Once you have a solid idea in place, it’s time to put that idea into a plan. Here are a few things you can do to set the stage for long-term success:
● Handle any legal necessities, such as establishing a business entity and obtaining an EIN; a lot of people don’t know what an EIN is, but ZenBusiness explains it all here.
● Take care of the financial side of things by estimating your startup costs, making a budget, creating financial projections, and applying for grants.
● Write a thorough business plan that details your company’s mission statement, goals, strategies, and milestones.
● Develop a website that accurately and attractively reflects your business.
Focus on Eco-Friendly Operations
Now to the meat of your company—adhering to a green business model. Here are a few ways that you can ensure your business is benefiting the environment:
● Do all of your accounting and bookkeeping digitally.
● Use sustainable packaging for any products you sell and ship.
● Purchase as many products as possible from local sources.
● Outfit your office with repurposed or recycled furniture and decorative items.
See, building a green business is more practical than you might think! Take the time to brainstorm potential business ideas, lay the groundwork for long-term success, and make sustainable operations a priority. In no time, you could be a thriving ecopreneur making a positive impact on the world around you!
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*About Joyce Wilson
Joyce Wilson is a retired teacher with decades of experience. Today, she is a mentor to teachers in her local public school system. She and a fellow retired teacher created teacherspark.org to share creative ideas and practical resources for the classroom. Joyce said, “I believe I can help save the Great Outdoors while also helping local economies recover.”
Cover Image via Pexels.
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