Entrepreneurs can develop green business ideas by first determining the kind of businesses in which they’re most interested. Generally, whether they’re based on providing a service or creating a product, all business ideas have room for green improvements. Some entrepreneurs can even go into business for themselves by acting as consultants for other companies that want to become greener. Of course, green business ideas aren’t limited to new businesses. Existing companies can implement greener, more environmentally friendly features and still provide the same or similar products and services.
An entrepreneur interested in any type of service industry can think of green business ideas that will help him provide that service as environmentally friendly as possible. For example, a prospective hotel owner might make his hotel solar-powered and equipped with water-efficient plumbing. Likewise, an aspiring restaurateur might choose to serve meals made with organic ingredients only and energy-efficient appliances. Other green business ideas for the service industry include opening a business that handles curbside recycling pickup, cleaning crew companies that use green cleaning products, and taxi services that use electric or hybrid vehicles.
Some green business ideas are more ideal for an entrepreneur who is planning a business based on product creation. For example, the entrepreneur might create an organic cosmetics line or environmentally friendly cleaning products. On a larger scale, some businesses might use reclaimed wood and other construction materials to build residential and commercial buildings.
Entrepreneurs who are knowledgeable about green business ideas can work as consultants for new or existing businesses. A green consulting business can help an entrepreneur who’s planning a business become aware of environmentally friendly options. The exact ideas will depend on the nature of the business, but some common examples include suggesting the company install energy- and water-efficient appliances and fixtures, using reclaimed materials for new construction, and partially or completely powering the offices with solar power.
On that note, these days it’s possible for most existing companies to take steps to make themselves more environmentally friendly. Some of the most popular ways existing businesses can go green include operating almost entirely online and allowing employees to telecommute. Many businesses provide their employees with electronic or direct deposit payroll options to avoid using the ink, paper, and mail services associated with printed checks. Companies can include discounts on public transportation in their benefits packages. Other ways existing businesses can become greener include placing recycling bins in employee lounges or cafeterias, replacing paper towel dispensers with hand dryers, and using recycled paper.