Sustainable-business-tips- Little Green Duck and the Duck Pond

Looking for sustainable business tips and ways to become greener? Last month I took part in the Duck Pond’s ‘Power of the Flock’ challenge. I had the pleasure of meeting a fantastic crew of eco-conscious and sustainable businesses. And I can honestly say it has been my favourite challenge so far.

Being a digital business that offers a service, it’s fair to say that our carbon footprint isn’t crazy high. Though as an eco-conscious individual, I wanted to find out how easy it would be to make the switch to become a green digital business. And the Power of the Flock tribe welcomed me with open arms. 

Whilst we’re not a sustainable business (yet), I thought it would be a great time to interview Katie Skelton, Founder of The Duck Pond and Little Green Duck. Here we find out Katie’s inspiration and words of support for anyone considering the greener route.

For those of our readers who’ve not met you yet, can you please introduce yourself and your business?

Hello! My name’s Katie and I am the founder of The Duck Pond. A membership and community that helps purpose-led business owners to connect with one another, access resources and expert training sessions and get support, to help them change the world! I believe there is huge potential for small businesses with purpose and ethics at their heart to come together and make a real difference to the planet and everyone living on it.

The other half of my company is Little Green Duck, a content and copywriting consultancy that helps ethical, sustainable and vegan brands to write copy that converts and blog content that connects with their audience and is engaging.

When did you start little green duck and what was your inspiration?

I started Little Green Duck in September 2018, having been made redundant from my commercial and bid writing role in the broadcast industry earlier that year. Up until then, it had never been “the right time”, so actually, being made redundant was the push I needed to finally set up my own business.

The business name itself came from my then 2-year-old daughter. I was struggling to think of a name that worked, so I asked her. She came out with Little Green Duck almost immediately and it stuck. I love the fact that now she’s 5 she can actually read the words on my screen when she sees them and it makes me proud that she’ll always be a part of my business journey.

The reason I started the Duck Pond was that I was connecting with so many small business owners on Instagram, and they were all saying the same thing – “I need help, but I don’t have the budget to pay for someone to do my marketing, social media, copywriting, bookkeeping…insert literally any other service that a business owner might need. 

So I decided to create a place where like-minded business owners could come together, be part of a community, but also essentially crowdfunding training and resources that they need. The training sessions are recorded so any new members also have access, so our bank of useful information is growing all the time.

I also run a free 3-day connection and collaboration challenge every 3-4 months called Power of the Flock, which is always buzzing and really does show that when we all come together, we can make a difference.

What would you say to any businesses who are looking for ways to become more sustainable?

I’d say go for the easy wins and build up! Something like making sure everyone in the team is on board with a clear recycling policy is a really good way of setting the tone and some good intentions for the future. 

Then move on to the slightly more complex, but immensely satisfying stuff! In the Duck Pond, we’ve been focusing a lot on reducing the digital carbon footprint of our websites and our businesses in general. In fact, a quick shout-out to Rachel Mills of Buttercup Learning who helped me put together a blog post and an amazing list of resources and references to help reduce your digital impact. It’s well worth a look!

I’d also say that communicating your sustainability journey with your audience is a powerful way to inspire others, start conversations and get ideas for what to do next. Nobody is perfect, so people like seeing a business saying “we’re trying, here’s what we’ve done so far, here’s what we’re planning to do…join us!”.

Can you name some of your fellow business inspirations?

Oh my goodness, there are so many! I wish I could name every single member of The Duck Pond because they are all incredible, inspirational people, who are doing so much good. Someone who consistently inspires me to be better is Alexis of Social Media For Humans. Alexis is a champion for doing social media in a way that works for you as an individual, but that also works for your customers. But the main thing I love is how much she has taught me about making sure my business is inclusive and accessible, but without feeling shamed for not doing as well as I could have in the past.

When’s the next power of the flock?

I’m hoping to set the next POTF up for September. If you’re interested in getting involved next time, you can fill in this form and I’ll send you a message when the dates are confirmed.

As far as social media challenges go, the Power of the Flock is all about community. After all, you’re connecting with purpose-driven businesses that are striving to have a positive impact on society and the environment. I would highly recommend it to any businesses who are eco-conscious, or looking to find ways to adapt and become more sustainable. Do you have any sustainable tips to share? Please leave them in the comments below.

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