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Sustainability has gone from being a trendy buzzword to something that consumers actively look for when supporting businesses. Indeed, a recent survey by the Ohio Health Issues Poll found that around 72% of Ohioans recognize that global warming is affecting the country. Meanwhile, at least 59% already feel the effects of climate change in their local community. One way to push back against the devastating effects of the crisis is by being sustainable, and enterprises in Ohio can do a lot in ushering this environmental revolution.

In this post, we’ll discuss why investing in sustainability is something that all Ohio businesses should prioritize.

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Businesses should start championing sustainability, as it can advance society’s progress and improve quality of life in Ohio. This is especially important, with local areas like Cleveland’s Cuyahoga County suffering worse environmental consequences. They have received failed and sub-par gradings for high ozone days and particle pollution.

As a business, you can help raise environmental awareness by promoting sustainability campaigns. These can highlight some of your eco-friendly practices and commitments, which may also encourage other Ohio businesses and residents to do their part.

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Every business owner understands the importance of keeping shareholders happy ⁠— and one way to do this is by investing in sustainability. Indeed, today’s investors are more likely to support businesses that are sustainable according to Harvard Business Review. Additionally, pushing for sustainable operations raises the reputation of your company, making it more attractive to consumers and investors alike.

Going green may be simpler if you’ve got sole proprietorship over your business, since you have the final say over all enterprise concerns. However, things are different if your Ohio-based business is a partnership, corporation, or LLC. After all, key business decisions have to go through partners or other owners too. One way to ensure that your business and team can follow through on commitments is by creating an operating agreement on sustainability-related plans. ZenBusiness's guide to Ohio LLCs explains how an operating agreement can dictate how your company is managed, how finances are handled, and even how voting structures work. Aim to set some sustainability and corporate responsibility goals and outline the conditions on your agreement. That way, it can offer clarity whenever you need to make such decisions. Of course, an operating agreement isn’t a necessity for LLCs and corporations in Ohio, but it can make it easier for you to resolve internal disagreements and pursue better practices.

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Here’s the thing: the upfront costs of sustainable practices often surprise many business owners. However, the long-term effects of these investments can drive bigger profits and improve your operations. For instance, conserving energy by switching to more energy-efficient products in your office can have a great overall impact on costs and operations. Additionally, going green makes your business eligible for tax credits, savings, and rebates that can equate to massive yearly savings.

Ultimately, Ohio businesses should do all they can to switch to more sustainable measures. This has become a drastic need, as the Center for American Progress reveals that natural disasters in the state have led to losses amounting to more than $1 billion.

In SmartSolve’s previous post ‘Bridging Sustainability and Profitability’, we also discussed how your workforce is critical in pursuing sustainability in your organization. So be sure to educate your staff by holding events and seminars that emphasize the social, environmental, and organizational benefits of investing in sustainability.

Guest article written for SmartSolve by Pam Jones.

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