A Magazine about the Hudson Valley’s local economy, published by Hudson Valley Current.

Top ten steps toward becoming a localist, triple bottom line thinker

by Ajax Greene  
Do you want more Localism in your life, business and community in 2014?
Great news! There are lots of ways we can have a huge impact that are relatively easy to do and very affordable—if not free. The cumulative effects of small changes can be awesome. An outstanding example: Independent businesses are predicted to out-sell non-independent corporate internet businesses within five years (that’s an IBM study, no less). Your support is vital to transforming the way the Hudson Valley does business to an economy that works for everyone including Mother Nature. Re>Think Local is the only regional organization advancing the cause of Localism and triple bottom line business. Below is a road map that, if followed, will lead you to a better place without ever leaving the Hudson Valley
Top 10 Things to do in 2014:
1. Sign up for the new GoLocal Campaign. This Re>Think Local initiative makes it fun and satisfying to shift more of your personal and business shopping to locally owned independent businesses.
We will show you how easy and sensible this is. What is so amazing is that just shifting 10% of our spending to local indie businesses can create more profit and thousands of jobs here in the Hudson Valley.
2. Relationships matter! Data proves the more connected a community is, the more vibrant and supported the self-employed community is economically. Attend a Re>Think Local Networking event. What you might view as casual conversation is actually subtly building social capital that has important impacts on the local economy. At the same time, members have repeatedly commented on the quality of like-minded people who show up ready for deep important conversations at our events. Be one of the cool kids; don’t be shy, and join us.
3. Opportunity matters! Commit to one major new game-changing business opportunity collaboration. We have been consistently saying collaboration is a primary skill set of the new economy. In public everyone agrees, yet many of us trip over our egos in trying to partner with others. In 2014 find for yourself at least one game-changing opportunity to collaborate on something bigger than you have ever done before. It’s hard work, it can be stressful, at times, but it can be very profitable in a triple bottom line kind of way.
4. Attend a Re>Think Local triple bottom line-localism educational event. You are an expert at your particular business, yet we can promise there is a collective wisdom from around the country and around the world that can help you take your expertise to a higher level. Whether you know it or not, your customer base is getting smarter and more empowered about the importance of socially responsible businesses. Your values can be a primary driver of your business. Are you up to date on the latest thinking?
5. Measure what matters! Do you think you are doing pretty well implementing your values? Great, prove it. Have your company (or LLC) take the free B Corp survey. See how you score (confidentially) against thousands of other companies. This is the new frontier. Customers demand good companies not just good marketing. It’s free—why not schedule the time today?
6. Place matters! Let’s keep more of our hard earned money right here in the Hudson Valley. Sign up for the Hudson Valley Current, a Re>Think Local sister organization offering an alternative currency. This state of the art effort takes the form of a B2B electronic platform that allows for members from all over the Hudson Valley to trade with each other without using up US dollars. It’s a perfect way to expand your current sales volume. (HudsonValleyCurrent.org)
7. Opportunity matters! Ask your local government and anchor institutions (hospitals, colleges, universities and other large nonprofit institutions) to support a local triple bottom line (people, planet, profits) procurement policy. These institutions are mandated to support local communities, yet many of them are blind or ignorant of the effect their spending has right here in the Hudson Valley. There are great examples from around the country of anchor institutions shifting how they spend a portion of their budget in ways that did not cost them anything extra, yet had a huge impact on the communities they are meant to support.
8. Ownership matters! Is your money causing some of the very problems you wish to solve? Move your money and investments to locally owned banks that reinvest in our community.
9. Stay up to date on Localism and triple bottom line business—visit the Re>Think Local website to get our free weekly email updates and follow us on Facebook for amazing content on Localism and the triple bottom line. Yes, 2014 is a great time to join Re>Think Local.
10. Nature matters! We encourage you to spend time out in the amazing nature the Hudson Valley offers. There are countless parks, bridges, rail trails, rivers and more for you to get connected to your essence. Science shows that time spent connecting will make you healthier, more creative, and more prosperous. Besides it’s just plain fun.
The next step is up to you. 2014 is there for you. How will you be different?