According to a recent survey, 79% of consumers would rather buy from companies doing their best to adopt green practices to save the environment than not, and 35% are willing to pay a premium for green goods. With consumers’ growing interest in “going green,” the Women’s Enterprise Development Center (WEDC) has seized the opportunity to share the news with small business owners, and will offer a workshop on “Green Values: Leveraging Your Business as a Social Change Agent.” The free workshop takes place on Wednesday, April 11, from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Lobby Board Room at 1133 Westchester Avenue, White Plains, NY.
“Companies are finding that being environmentally conscientious can be good for business,” notes Anne Janiak, executive director of WEDC, a nonprofit organization that provides entrepreneurs with the skills, tools, and resources they need to start and expand their own businesses and to achieve economic self-sufficiency. “Our April 11 workshop will focus on how communicating green values in your branding message will benefit your bottom line.”
Featured speakers include Jean Hamerman, founder and president of NeighborGreen, a home weatherizing company that offers incremental, affordable solutions to help people increase their home’s comfort and energy efficiency. A former commercial lender at banking and microfinance institutions and senior government manager in the Bloomberg administration, Hamerman finds that NeighborGreen aligns her passion for the environment with her professional background in innovative service delivery, small business development and alternative energy efficiency.
Also speaking will be Sharon Rowe, CEO of Eco-Bags Products, Inc. Rowe started Eco-Bags in 1989 as a teenager, well before the green wave rushed forth. She had a vision for a cleaner, less wasteful life and launched her company to "clean up the planet one bag at a time.TM” The line began with an expandable cotton/mesh bag. Since then, Eco-Bags has created canvas bags, produce bags, lunch bags, travel bags, and more. The product line can be found nationwide in various food co-ops, produce stores, and retail locations as well as online.
According to Rowe, “Instead of looking for customers to sell your product or service to, the workshop will examine where and how you can attract customers with whom to do business. It’s about clearly branding who you are and what you care about, and consistently communicating that message. When you create something with your values, you have the opportunity to fashion something bigger and longer lasting than a single sale or transaction. You create a ‘culture’ where ongoing commerce happens.”
Made possible by generous support from Con Edison, “Green Values” is the third workshop in WEDC’s Green Business Speaker Series, which examines the “what, how and why” of running successful green businesses. The workshop will be interactive, allowing participants to ask questions and receive feedback.
Pre-registration is required. Register at www.wedcbiz.org/events
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About the Women's Enterprise Development Center Inc.
Since 1997, the nonprofit Women’s Enterprise Development Center Inc., has provided entrepreneurs with the skills, tools and resources they need to start their own businesses, to expand them and to achieve economic self-sufficiency. WEDC offers a wide array of entrepreneurial training programs and services, including one-on-one counseling, assistance with access to capital, networking events and small business seminars. WEDC is the designated women’s business center of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) for Westchester County and the lower Hudson Valley. WEDC is also the NY Empire State Development Corporation’s Entrepreneurial Assistance Program (EAP) Center for Westchester County.