Procurement · 7 February 2018

Consumer expectations drive ethical business ambitions of small firms

Business owners can typically save around 4, 000 per year on energy bills by investing in solar panels
Some eight in ten small UK business owners plan to introduce ethical business practices within the next few years, according to new findings, as consumers and staff place greater value on sustainability.

In a survey of small business leaders, advertising agency 18 Feet and Rising found that 88 per cent valued sustainability and understood the environmental responsibilities of commercial organisations.

Driving the ethical mind-set was the understanding that consumers wanted to see brands behave better. Some 84.5 per cent of respondents believed their customers were interested in seeing sustainable practices introduced.

Almost half thought introducing ethical practices would grow their customer base, while over a quarter believed their firm would become a more attractive proposition for both new and existing staff.

With the benefits of responsibly sourced products, local supply chains and energy efficiency widely appreciated by bosses, eight in ten planned to introduce ethical business practices within three to five years.



don’t underestimate what your business can do for local sustainability

Fixing your eyes on your long-term impact and daring to dream of alternative ways of working is a key characteristic of any successful business leader.


However, despite the wish to embrace sustainability at their firm, 70 per cent claimed they had so far struggled to implement greener policies. One factor was cited more frequently that any other as barrier cost.



Praseeda Nair is an impassioned advocate for women in leadership, and likes to profile business owners, advisors and experts in the field of entrepreneurship and management.

Business development