Why are smaller restaurants & hotels not engaging a Sustainable Development (SD) strategy?

Smaller restaurants and hotels should all be engaging in a Sustainable Development strategy.


Sam Trainor-Buckingham

First off, there is no valid reason why smaller companies within hospitality are not engaging a SD strategy. Save money, improve customer trust in your brand, gain positive PR… the list goes on.

So why?

Firstly, Sustainable Development is a relatively new concept – particularly to the hospitality sector – so the businesses pioneering it tend to be the ‘big players’. This is yet to trickle down to heart of the industry, but the benefits are the same to any size business. The Hilton Group saved $9 million through implementing sustainable policies from 2005 – 2008.1 Whilst the savings are proportionate to the number of hotels in their group, the potential for all businesses is clear.

Secondly, knowledge and desire are required to implement a SD strategy. Knowledge of the benefits & savings that can be made and desire to improve your business and move it into the 21st Century.

Thirdly, expertise are essential to take full advantage of the benefits a SD Strategy provides. Whilst many changes can be made from within the company, consultants are a necessity in this area. However, smaller businesses are often reluctant to bring in consultants due to perceived high fees. The beauty of employing experts in sustainability is it results in a pay back, over time, that more than covers their fees – resulting in increased profits and a new business ethic. Plus, there’s all manor of grants & interest free loans to cover this cost.

So what you waiting for?

1 Green Hotelier, issue 47, p.6

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