Review: The Green Start-Up

Juliet Davenport compares launching a company with jumping off a cliff, in ‘The Green Start-Up’, her new book for green entrepreneurs. She has drawn on her experience launching Good Energy in 1999 and working with other companies since then, in this useful guide on how to ‘Make your business better for the planet’.
This valuable ‘how-to’ book includes experience and anecdotes from many other business owners as well as herself. It will be a useful handbook for people starting businesses, with an easy reading style that makes the book as a whole approachable – even for those who are in the throes of starting up an enterprise. But the aim is for readers to be able to dip in and out and read each chapter as an individual briefing – on finance, marketing or people, for example – and this works well.
Davenport wants the book to provide “actionable advice” for busy entrepreneurs at every level, so she offers three sets of action points at the end of each chapter to allow readers to decide how green they are able to be. There is also a section linking to organisations that can provide further help or expertise.
For those readers using it as a go-to guide an index would have been helpful. For example there is a useful explanation of the ‘B Corp’ movement – one of the many buzz words and phrases that abound in business, and especially in green businesses. Until you know what they mean it is not obvious where you can find them in the book or remember where they are if you want to look again.
I can imagine readers’ copies will soon be ornamented with book mark and notes in the margins – experiences and hints that might be shared. Davenport could add to her ‘Useful Resources’ an online home for them to exchange their experiences.