What is the Biggest Selling Point of Sustainability?

You land a big meeting with a corporation to promote your sustainable product or service. What is the biggest selling point for them? Is it financial or environmental? Or “doing the right thing”?

In our experience, it is none of the above. The biggest selling point is the business case – the rationale of why the sustainable measures make sense. The business case can take many factors into account and weighs out the advantages and disadvantages. The business case also takes the company’s particular circumstances into account. Continue reading

Dealing with “No”: How Steve Jobs, Oprah Winfrey and Michael Jordan Failed and Succeeded

The entrepreneurial journey, which fascinates most but is lived by few, is one which is highly challenging. Dealing with rejection and failure is all part of the journey, but it is hard – painfully hard sometimes – to find the strength to keep going when it seems like doors are shutting.

One of my tactics to deal with “No” is to remind myself that I am not alone. Any successful person will tell you that they have been rejected at some point – and usually many times. Failure comes with risk, but so does opportunity.

Here are three stories of mega-stars who failed, persevered and became the icons we know them to be today. These stories show that “no” is not necessarily a roadblock, but a signpost along the way. How these individuals dealt with their failures is what was truly defining. Continue reading

Sustainable Buying for Business and Personal: Three Questions to Ask

Sustainability – meeting the needs of today without compromising those of the future. Who would not want that? I am convinced that most people want to do the right thing when it comes to their impact, but often do not know where to start, what their options for sustainability are and what the costs might be.

Indeed, sustainable buying is not clear cut. There are so many factors that go into sustainability – financial, environmental and social considerations – and it is difficult to weigh the importance of each. Here are three questions that we ask when purchasing for our business, and when I buy for my personal life. These questions help us to determine our options as well as the associated costs and benefits. Continue reading

An Inside View at Creating a Sustainable Business about Sustainability: Successes, Failures and Lessons Learned

In July 2010, I launched a business that I felt made complete sense – help people get financial and environmental results by providing tools and options to better manage their resources. There was a better way – be efficient at “RE”.

Hence, REfficient was born. In a year and a half, we have made great strides forward and yet have also faced major challenges. We have witnessed that what we envision truly is possible. Yet we have experienced that for our journey to fulfill its potential, nothing less than sheer determination, perseverance and ultimate smarts is required. Getting any business off the ground is not easy, but a company that challenges society’s norms – and with a big, bold vision to bring positive change to the world – seems almost impossible.

While vision is critical, implementation is just as vital, if not more important. This blog is about what we learn – the things that work, the things that fail (and sometimes rather miserably), and everything in between. Some blogs will focus on building a business, some will focus on sustainability, and many will cross over: creating a sustainable business about sustainability. I will be as honest as possible, without revealing any specifics or names related to our business for confidentiality reasons. Continue reading