The Buyerarchy of Needs; Do You REALLY Need That?
In honour of Spuds new #LetsNotWaste 2016 campaign, I thought I would use the platform to talk about something I’m passionate about which is purchasing with both thought and integrity. Consumers must be more conservative with their purchases. Consumers need to be more exclusive when it comes to buying: is this company a B Corp? Are they organic? Am I buying GMOs?
The “Buyerarchy of Needs” is a spin off on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. It is a great visual of how we need to examine and think through all of our purchases. It can be taken as a set of questions to ask yourself before buying anything new (from bottom to top of pyramid).
- Can I use what I have already?
- Can I borrow this from someone I know?
- Can I swap something I don’t use for the item I need?
- Can I buy it used or at a thrift store?
- Can I make this myself?
- Buy it new.
This is a great starting point for thinking critically about our purchases. If we all put this kind of thought into things before we buy them we would do a great deal to reduce consumer waste. I do however think its missing one final question to consider before swiping the old credit card. That question is:
- Is the company I am purchasing this from doing right by the environment, their employees and their local community?
When we think of waste, sometimes its easy to only think in terms of the plastic packaging we throw out, or the waste that we directly see and deal with as the consumer. We often don’t think of the waste that is produced throughout the manufacturing and distribution of the product. This type of waste is often a hidden type of waste and one of the largest sources of waste in any products life cycle.
There are a lot of companies out there who are selling items that are toxic for the environment, toxic for their workers to handle and even toxic for us as a consumer to use or own. As I’m sure you all know, many companies put the almighty dollar first but that has got to change and is changing as people choose to spend their money with companies who are doing better than the status quo.
I’m proud to work at Spud which is a certified B-Corporation. That means that we are holding ourselves to a higher standard of environmental regulation and better wages and benefits for all employees. All the while also trying to support and foster the growth of a community of health conscious individuals who are passionate about reducing waste!
The awesome news for us all is that Spud isn’t the only B-corporation and certainly not the only company trying to change the world through awesome business practices.
So lets all try to think before we buy and also think about the people we are buying from. If money makes the world go round we might as well ensure that our money is going to people who are trying to do better and certainly not to people trying to make a quick buck at the expense of the planet.
Matt in Customer Care.