Building a G.R.E.A.T. Company

    Over the past 30 years of working with CEO’s, business owners, and senior executive teams, I have learned the key components to design and grow great small to mid-sized companies. Follow my posts over the next couple weeks to learn all about how to make your company a G.R.E.A.T. one.    ...

What’s the Future Worth?

The million-dollar question is this: what, from a business perspective, is being green worth? Will customers be attracted to environmentalism and pay for it? I have watched leadership groups gasp in horror at the thought of being seen as “tree huggers.” As a recovering hippie who listens to Rush Limbaugh, I don’t think being a tree hugger is such bad a thing. But for some executives, this connotation apparently carries horrific implications—might they be turning into … hippies? Is it the possibility of taking drugs and wearing tie-dyed shirts that scares them? Is it that they think listening to the Grateful Dead is mandatory? In fact, this is a generational issue. Executives in their 50’s and 60’s are environmentally sympathetic; we all want fresh air and clean water. However, this age group tends to have parameters around how far they will allow their companies to go toward sustainability. Meanwhile, employees in their 20’s and 30’s—whom I will affectionately call “Enviro-Fanatics”— find great excitement in environmental development. They are passionate about moving sustainability initiatives forward and tend to be extremely motivated by making a difference. This generation perceives that it has more at stake in the environment and the future. If an organization goes in a sustainable direction, it can build employee loyalty as well as public goodwill. If you are looking at whom to put in charge of researching environmental initiatives, it is the younger group. They will find the options and possibilities. The older set of business managers and executives will think it through and implement, and the younger set will do the passionate heavy lifting. Both will lead...

Make Green from Being Green

In honor of earth day on April 22, our next blog series will feature some tips for creating more sustainable business practices. Let’s start this series of posts with a disclaimer: I do not consider myself an expert in sustainability. However, I probably know enough to be dangerous. In my view, sustainable business practices means your business is conducted in such a way that it can exist without being environmentally destructive. At the very least, environmental neutrality is what your company wants to achieve. An even better aspiration is to positively impact the environment. There are dozens, hundreds of ideas, large and small, that organizations can implement to positively impact the environment. Additionally, your company can make money as you create a green reason for customers to buy from your organization. When real dollars can be made from environmentalism, then environmentalism is good for you and good for business. This epitomizes “making green from green.” Learn more about CMI...