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It can be downright difficult for any emerging business to thrive nowadays.

But while the entrepreneurial landscape is constantly evolving and competition is becoming stiffer, there are a number of enterprises that still manage to gain an edge over most of their peers.

And evidently, one of the reasons they succeed is because they take steps to make their workplace more energy efficient.

Like creating a safe working environment, energy efficiency is vital to entrepreneurial success in this day and age.

If your start-up could use an improvement in this aspect, here are the top 5 tips to help you get started.

1. Replace incandescent bulbs

On average, lighting accounts for 50% of an office’s energy bill.

However, only an estimated 10% of the energy used by incandescent bulbs is converted to light, and the rest becomes heat.

Replacing them with compact fluorescent light bulbs is by far one of the easiest and least costly ways to cut your energy costs.

Since compact fluorescent light bulbs are believed to use 75% less energy and have a longer lifespan, you can expect to save hundreds of dollars a year.

2. Keep your HVAC system in tip-top shape

Your heating, ventilating and air conditioning system should undergo maintenance at least once a year.

Since it is used extensively on a daily basis – especially during summer and winter – its efficiency will surely decline without regular tune-ups.

Even if you have the latest and most efficient ducted air conditioning, do not underestimate the importance of regular maintenance.

A well-maintained HVAC system is energy efficient, has excellent longevity, and is less likely to malfunction.

Also, instead of relying on your HVAC system for all your heating and cooling needs, you can use electric fans or sunlight to create and maintain a comfortable temperature.

3. Cover up leaks

Whether you lease or own your workplace, it is your responsibility to make it comfortable and conducive to productivity.

If drafts are a problem, cover up leaks with caulking or weatherstripping.

Aside from improving indoor air quality and making ventilation easier to manage, this can make your heating and cooling efforts more efficient so your HVAC system will never be overworked.

4. Be wise with your office equipment

Aside from making sure that employees use office equipment properly, your business must also have energy efficient appliances.

If you are in the market for new ones, choose those that are ENERGY STAR qualified.

Computers, refrigerators, thermostats, fans and other equipment that have an ENERGY STAR mark are known for their excellent efficiency.

5. Make employees more involved

This one is practicality a no-brainer.

Employers must take the initiative to encourage and guide employees to make smart, energy-saving decisions.

In fact, everyone in the business should be well-informed about the importance of energy efficiency and the simplest ways to achieve it.

It also helps to designate an individual or team to be in charge of promoting and overseeing energy practices in the workplace.

Improving energy efficiency not only cuts bills, but also reduces carbon footprint, helps the environment and creates a positive reputation for you business. It is a win-win situation that benefits everyone, so do not shy away from it and let these tips guide you.