Sustainability

Gentle on the earth: Big on the profits

December 14, 2012

Dr. Bronner’s liquid castile soap, aptly described as “one of America’s great weird brands,” made its U.S. debut in the late 1940s. Emanuel Bronner liked to talk about “constructive capitalism,” which he de­­scribed as sharing profits with workers and going gentle on the earth. His heirs codified this concept.

Method: More than a green culture

November 29, 2011

Eric Ryan and Adam Lowry first noticed the need for their company when they shared a house with three friends. In looking for cleaning products that didn’t have harsh, toxic ingredients, Ryan and Lowry came up empty-handed. Thus the idea for Method home-cleaning products was kindled.

Lush: Happy people selling happy soap

June 29, 2011
At Lush, happy people make happy soap, literally—the handcrafted cosmetics are fresh, free of preservatives and made with ingredients not tested on animals. The lesson of how Lush cosmetics grew from one small store to a worldwide chain in 44 countries holds valuable insights for any small business in its growth stage.

4-stage approach to sustainability

June 14, 2010

How you respond to the sustainability trend will affect the fate of your organization. Trouble is, many leaders are flailing. Take a multistage approach: Stage 1: Do old things in new ways. Stage 2: Do new things in new ways. Stage 3: Transform core business. Stage 4: Create a new business model.

The greening of Ford Motor Co.

March 12, 2010
When Bill Ford joined Ford Motor Co.’s board of directors in 1988, he was told to leave his concerns over the environment behind. But Ford felt that sustainability—the responsible use of natural resources—would be key to the survival of the company his great-grandfather founded. By the mid-2000s, when gasoline topped $4 a gallon, Ford pulled ahead of its U.S. competitors in developing fuel-efficient vehicles.

Sustainability á la Walmart

February 12, 2010

Moving toward sustainability requires taking big, game-changing moves and smaller ones as well, says Walmart’s senior vice president of sustainability Matt Kistler. Walmart currently has three sustainability goals. For leaders trying to follow suit, one key is to seek out opportunities that positively affect the environment and result in cost savings, says Kistler.