Let me have the “Doh!” moment for you first. I don’t mind looking foolish. Sometimes that’s important to the story of how we become savvier.
Just this week, someone was asking my opinion on adding customized labels to mini-water bottles as a customer amenity. I endorsed the idea from a “Let’s wow the guest!” standpoint, even sharing a resource where you can have custom lables emblazened with your logo. This morning, after reading something that made me see the light, I rapidly sent a back-peddling email that recanted my endorsement of that idea entirely.
Those individual servings of water are horrible for the eco-system. When I was in Africa, the conservationists there really spoke out about how bad the bottled water trend is for the environment. I stopped buying it for awhile, then slipped back. Sometimes I even buy Fiji brand water, because I like their pretty (but wasteful) bottles. But besides the elaborate packaging, I forgot the impact of having those bottles shipped all the way around the world. The naked vanity of wanting to have a pretty picture on the water bottle has me a bit red-faced right now. I’m never buying Figi brand water again, and am getting my refillable Nalgene bottle out of the kitchen cabinet as soon as I post this.
As individuals, we need to look at how our choices affect the world, but as business owners we need to hold ourselves to an even higher standard. When we make choices on behalf of our clients, such as giving them a mini-bottle of water, then the impact of our decisions is magnified by how successful we become. We are obligated to pay attention and choose wisely, even in the smallest of small businesses.
Here is the article that made me remember how bad bottled water is for the environment.
And here is the deep link to an article by a London food critic (sorry, link expired) who promises bad reviews to restaurants that don’t offer tap water and try to steer people toward bottles. Talk about walking your talk through your business! What a good example.
Jaya Savannah - Chief Inspiration Officer. Strategy Coach for Holistic Businesses. Trainer, speaker, and writer. Spiritually aware, yet street smart. Elephant lover.