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  • Writer's pictureJohanna Catani

Low hanging fruits taste sweetest

Our clients often argue that they feel frustrated with the complexity of sustainability issues. Our standard reply is: Start picking up the low-hanging fruits, and go from there. Point being, that it is better to start with something right away rather than wait until the whole supply chain has been audited, strategy has been updated and business model changed from linear to circular or something else that requires organizational restructuring or system change. You can always upgrade and add, you can always grow, but it is important that you just get going with something that is tangible, has sustainable impact on your actions, products and/or services and that engages as many people as possible.

Take baby steps

ChopValue, a Canadian company founded by Felix Böck is a true inspiration for anyone who is at the beginning of their sustainability journey. One day Böck was eating sushi with his girlfriend. Böck was frustrated for he could not convince big construction companies that there was no such thing as waste, rather just wasted resources. His girlfriend pointed the chopsticks in his hand and noted that maybe Böck was thinking too big, maybe he needed to start with something smaller. He stared at the chopsticks and got his eureka moment. Next day Felix Böck drew a business plan for second life of chop sticks. Four years later, ChopValue has collected 32 million chopsticks (350 000 per week only from Vancouver area) and reproduces them into furniture, kitchen utensils and other wooden objects. Company has made profit since the day one, employs today 40 people and is scaling the business model into the global market. Link to the full article in Guardian.

Practical tips to start your sustainability journey today

1. Choose an action that can be started right away, with little effort and resources

2. Don’t plan too much, instead ask your closest colleagues to contribute and grow from there

3. Measure your impact and communicate the results

4. Tell also openly if you could not reach the goals you have set to yourself, honesty is appreciated. It does not matter if you need to pivot, there will be other ideas once you got going.

And what was the baby step we in SDG Monitor took today? We decided to start turning off our computers every evening. Stay tuned , we keep you updated how we managed to do that.


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