Get buy-in from leadership and staff
Whether you’re a certified energy manager or a church volunteer, one person can’t do it all. Energy management is a team effort, and you’ll have the greatest success when you get buy-in from all levels of your organization.
Fortunately, there’s already a well-established case for energy efficiency as a sound business practice. Studies have found that leaders in energy management achieve superior stock and financial performance over those slow to adopt energy management. They’ve also shown that energy-efficiency improvements increase operating income and asset value, meaning it’s possible to turn pennies into millions.
Nevertheless, energy management may be a low priority for leadership who may have many competing priorities and who may believe that energy is just a fixed cost of doing business. Here are just a few ways to counter common objections.
“We don’t have the time.”
We get it. You’re being pulled in 100 directions and just don’t have time to take on a new project. Time is valuable. But so are money and the environment. Energy-efficiency upgrades don’t just save energy, they cut your costs and help prevent greenhouse gases from being emitted into the atmosphere.
There are many low-cost strategies to jumpstart your energy savings with just a modest investment of time. From there, you might move on to cost-effective investments.
Once you start saving, you might just find that time spent saving energy is time well-spent.
“We don’t have the expertise.”
You may lack staff with the technical expertise to identify and implement energy efficiency projects. Help is available! Get started with free resources from ENERGY STAR to help you save energy, from simple steps to the comprehensive five-stage approach outlined in the ENERGY STAR Building Upgrade Manual.
Or, consider enlisting the services of an ENERGY STAR service and product provider, who can help you benchmark your building, improve performance, and earn recognition. Cost savings from energy projects can often help pay for improvements.
“We don’t have the money.”
You’re already paying your energy bill, right? By saving energy, you’ll actually make money. And by managing energy smartly, you can contain costs and strategically reduce risk from rising energy prices. Remember, you don’t always need to buy new technologies to save energy. ENERGY STAR partners have shown that you can often improve efficiency by 10 percent or more through low- and no-cost measures, such as focusing on improving the energy performance of existing equipment and updating operations and maintenance procedures as a way to get started.
To help make the business case, find examples of wasted energy at your organization and estimate the savings from better practices. When you’re evaluating capital expenditures, consider lifecycle costs and benefits rather than just initial costs. Follow EPA’s five-stage approach to implement changes smoothly. And use the ENERGY STAR financial value calculator to measure the impact of the program by its effect on earnings and shareholder value.
- Learn more about this calculator and other strategies and incentives to finance energy efficiency projects.
“We’re not one of those green companies.”
If you’re not, you should be. Consider:
- 62 percent of adults are either equally or more likely to visit a business that focuses on green, regardless of distance or effort required.1
- More than 80 percent of workers are attracted by an employer with an environmental reputation.2
- 88 percent say policies to address global warming are important when deciding where to work.2
- About half of workers would forgo higher pay or a promotion to work for an organization with a good reputation.2
And if that weren’t enough, studies have shown that superior energy performance contributes to better learning and increased productivity and health. They can also improve community public health by preventing pollution.
Take the first step by using energy more efficiently. Then demonstrate that you’re part of the fight against climate change using tools and resources from EPA to track your progress and promote your energy savings.
1Source: Harris Interactive, 2010
2Source: 2009 Kelly Global Workforce Index