Acting environmentally friendly is something we learn unknowingly at a very young age. It can happen in a lot of ways like when our parents tell us to turn off the lights when we leave a room for the 20th time or when we drop a candy paper on the ground and get scolded for it. It might not be until many years later that we understand what it all was for. Be as it may, the basics of being environmentally friendly are forged deep into all of our heads by the time we start making our own decisions.
I believe this is a perfect metaphor for what happened in the corporate world. Before, say, the mid-20th century, not many companies cared for what happened to the environment. But then emerged other organizations that did care, telling these companies things like “Your chimneys seem to be spitting out a bit too many harmful chemicals” or “We don’t enjoy you pouring all that smelly goo in these lakes.” As the public awareness of all the ways companies used to abuse the Mother Earth increased, they were forced to start taking the environment more and more into consideration in their actions. Years passed, and much like you and me when growing up, the corporate world started to embrace the basics of being environmentally friendly. Of course, these changes were only baby steps leading to something much bigger.
The new millennium hit, and the growing trend of going green exploded. The business world had realized that they could turn all the extra expenses used on preserving nature into profit. With the right kind of campaigning and marketing of their green products and services, companies could gain a serious advantage against their competitors. Let me demonstrate: When you’re strolling around in a supermarket, there are usually a lot of almost identical products made for the same purpose, but by different companies. You have a lot of options to choose from and might need a little push in making the decision. This kind of situation is where the little green label on one of the products can be decisive.
Even a small good deed for the environment, as long as it gets visibility in the media, can be enough to give a company that extra boost it needs to separate itself from its competitors in the eyes of the consumers. The trend of going green has become a true corner stone of marketing strategies in the corporate world. Those who fail to notice this, and keep taking advantage of the environment can take a big hit in the face of their company’s image, and in the worst case scenario be dealing with a world-wide boycott of their products. Whether companies actually care for the environment or just act out like they do for more sales, it is still for common good and what the world these days expects from them.