Blog : Academy to Instruct ABCs of Sustainability for Small- and Mid-size Businesses

By Herb | Feb 13, 2013 | in

MANCHESTER, N.H. — A human resources company is offering classes at its Sustainability Academy designed to guide small- and mid-size businesses through the process of getting sustainability started and implemented in their organizations.

The Sustainability Academy is a three-class program that helps businesses start with sustainability in a very practical way. Each is a stand-alone class, and together they give small- and mid-size business owners the right amount of knowledge and tools to start a sustainability program at their company. After each three-hour class, participants will have an action plan in hand that they can implement in their workplace. And two weeks after each class, participants return to the Sustainability Academy to share the results with their classmates.

The Sustainability Academy is the brainchild of Mirjam IJtsma, owner of Cultural Chemistry, a unique service that mimics a traditional human resources department but offers its services at a fraction of the typical cost. She started the Small Business Academy — which supports the Sustainability Academy — because there is no place in New England where small- and mid-size business owners can attend workshops that deliver hands-on, practical knowledge without either spending an arm and a leg or when just one or two people need to be trained.

“When meeting with other consultants in the sustainability area, we felt that this was specifically true when it came to training in the area of social responsibility and sustainability,” IJtsma says. “This is when we decided to join forces. We are very proud to have a solid faculty team that can support small businesses with direct feedback, coaching and their knowledge.”

The 21st-century definition of sustainability means business owners making wise use of their company’s environmental, human and financial resources, so that their business, their community, and the environment in which they live and operate can all thrive for the long term. Many small- and mid-sized businesses want to operate more sustainably and achieve the financial and strategic benefits that the larger companies achieve by doing so, but it can sometimes seem like only the larger businesses have the resources to address their sustainability.

All classes will be delivered at Cultural Chemistry’s training center in the Millyard of Manchester, 150 Dow Street. “Sustainability Assessment and Action Planning” takes place March 5; “Planning and Implementing for Success” on April 16; and “Measuring, Reporting, and Promoting your Sustainability” on May 14. Each class costs $195. The whole program is offered at the special rate of $550, a $35 saving, plus each participant will receive the book “Sustainability @ the rate of Passion,” by Leen Zevenbergen.

Cultural Chemistry is a business partner of the Green Alliance, a union of local sustainable businesses promoting environmentally sound business practices and a green co-op offering discounted green products and services to its members. Green Alliance Green Card Holders receive a 10 percent discount on The Sustainability Academy classes by using the code “Greenalliance12.” And Green Alliance Business Partners will receive a 15 percent discount if they reserve before February 28. They then need to use the code “Greenalliance15.”

To attend The Sustainability Academy, contact IJtsma by email at, by telephone at (603) 623 3000 – office, or register online at

For more information, on the March 5 class, “Sustainability Assessment and Action Planning,” visit For the April 16 class, “Planning and Implementing for Success,” visit And for the May 14 class, “Measuring, Reporting, and Promoting your Sustainability,” visit

For more information about Cultural Chemistry, visit And for the Green Alliance, visit