5 Tips for Fortunate Ecopreneurs

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Are you fed up with the Fed (Federal Reserve System) and Treasury Secretary, or growing weary working at a job for someone else’s dream and financial benefit?

I was, before I launched by own dream green business and starting making time to smell the flowers and eat the strawberry.

Here are 5 tips to start a green business based on my experiences and book, ECOpreneuring: Putting Purpose and the Planet before Profits:

(1) Follow your Earth Mission.
Wealth without purpose is poverty. Who wants to be the richest person in the cemetery? Turn your passions and sense of purpose into an enterprise. Ecopreneurs craft an “Earth Mission” to use their business as a catalyst make the world a better place, often defining success qualitatively, not quantitatively.

(2) Operate your green business with a triple bottom line: people, planet and (some) profits.
Rather than the purpose of business to simply generate profits, sustainable businesses thrive in a restoration ECOnomy based on restoring or enhancing the planet, providing fair and equitable relationships amongst all stakeholders, and generate profits to sustain the business and its mission (in various ways, to make the world a better place).

(3) Thrive in abundance, not dwell on scarcity — or fear.
Ecopreneurs create enterprises that prosper by focusing on the abundance in our world, like solar energy. Many businesses are completely powered with renewable energy and seek to harvest and share the surplus, whether from their agricultural operation or when restoring ecological services once provided for free by nature. Decisions are made because of opportunities, not out of fear.

(4) Be place-based and local.
The ultimate competitive advantage is to feature what other globally-minded businesses cannot: the unique resources, attributes or qualities of your local community. By staying local, enterprising ecopreneurs help revitalize their community and foster greater cohesion, economic cooperation, and stability not beholden to global financial fantasies or fossil fuel price gyrations based on fickle energy intelligence. Live local, buy local, sell local.

(5) Understand the difference between “good debt” and “bad debt.”
While the American obsession with a growth economy fueled by debt continues to rage, many ecopreneurs have discovered the immense freedom, control and satisfaction that comes from minding your own business. Creating a quality of life through a business that seeks to maximize happiness and meaningfulness for its owner often translates to creative and frugal approaches to operating a business that doesn’t demand piles of debt, the extension of credit, or federal bailouts to survive.

Today, our business produces more energy than it uses, provides an immensely satisfying quality of life, helps restore the biological systems on which we depend, and fosters community (not more money in a “retirement account” to be frittered away by means beyond my control). My wife and I, on how we operate our Inn Serendipity B&B, feel fortunate in many more ways than money could ever define.

What tips do you have to share? How do you consider yourself fortunate?