If Green Tech Is So Great, Why Is Adoption So Slow?

September 2, 2009

Though there’s been considerable media coverage on green technology, businesses have been slow to adopt and promote it to customers. The reason is complex because there are two technology arenas involved: Technology Used to Run the Business, and Technology Sold to Customers.

We’ll take those arenas one at a time.

Using Green Technology to Run a Business

Using green technology to run your business benefits both the environment and your bottom line. “Going green” is a critical piece of the sustainable business puzzle: Your business will dry up faster than the autumn leaves over the next five years if you have failed to put green — or at least greener — technology to work for you.

Okay. If that’s the case, why are businesses so slow to adopt green tech?

  1. The owners or executives don’t see the benefits of putting green tech into play.
  2. They believe it will be costly to replace existing infrastructure.
  3. They lack information on what it means to “go green.”
  4. They lack the ability to construct a solid business case to present to the Board or to executives.
  5. They have no “green” champion at the executive level.

Going green in IT benefits both the bottom line and the environment. But proving such statements requires careful assessment of existing infrastructure and, more important, a detailed understanding of the business needs that IT exists to support.

Complex organizational, technological, and project management issues must be appropriately addressed. That’s why it’s so important to understand technology’s role in your business and in your customer’s businesses or lives. Be opportunistic about it — look for ways to deliver green technology solutions as opportunities arise. The better we educate our clients and prospects on how to identify opportunities, the easier it will be for them to see the benefits of deploying green tech.

Education is the same challenge for technology sold to customers.

Green Tech in the Consumer Market

Like it or not, there are two big ugly reasons why consumers resist purchasing green tech products: Perceived expense, and perceived performance. I’m sure my knowledgeable compadre Steven Castle will have a lot to say about this. While there may be some truth to both objections, it’s once again educating people on what green tech can do for them over the long term that will make the difference.

I can’t think of anyone who doesn’t want to cut down on the home energy bill, for instance. Or who wouldn’t want a safer, more flexible, and regularly backed up computer for the home or small business. Yes, green tech makes that possible, too.

We’ll do our part here at GreenTechAdvocates.com to help you stay educated on the most effective ways to put green tech to work for your business and your customers. Stay tuned.


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