Accredited Investors is investing in the future by creating a sustainable work environment.
Accredited Investors is a wealth management firm in Edina dedicated to helping families create purpose for their wealth. The company also fosters a long-term view in regard to the way it operates—incorporating next generation thinking that manifests in real, sustainable ways.
The mindset is immediately obvious when you see their building on West 73rd St. in Edina. The company bought the building 14 years ago when they’d outgrown their office space in the Centennial Lakes area. There are no manicured lawns. Instead, it’s encircled by rain gardens and wild flowers that don’t require gas mowers or dangerous chemical fertilizers. It’s beautifully well-maintained by Pleasant View Gardens and Natural Shore Technologies whose staff transitions the landscape for spring and fall and also replaces plants monthly to provide variety.
The wild flowers are a perfect environment for honey bees. And last summer, an apiary was installed on the property in partnership with the University of Minnesota’s hive-to-bottle program. A second apiary was added this past spring. Clients are sometimes even presented with a small gift bag containing bottled honey harvested from the hives on the premises.
The building’s flat roof is well-suited to support a covering of solar panels installed by Blue Horizon in two phases, and co-founder Wil Heupel says the business derives an annual average of 70 percent of its electrical needs from solar power. There’s also a solar panel attached to an electric car charging station in the parking lot, although Heupel admits the small panel does not generate enough power to charge a vehicle. It’s still a wonderful opportunity to raise awareness about the advantages of solar energy and electric cars. It’s also unlocked and available for public use.
Managing director Becky Krieger says, “Many of our clients are business owners and we encourage them to do succession planning, so we know the importance of practicing what we preach about planning for the future, minimizing our carbon footprint and thinking broadly, beyond ourselves and how our business impacts families and the community.”
Internally, the company also tries to create a sustainable work environment. They installed a Bevi Station, a smart water machine that provides flavored sparkling water on demand to be used in refillable bottles instead of providing drinks in single use plastic bottles. They’ve eliminated single use plastics and try to only hire catering companies that share similar values, like Common Roots.
In 2017, some of the building’s interior lighting was switched to LED and even the janitorial service is required to use environmentally friendly cleaning supplies.
The company’s concern for the environment seems to go hand in hand with its care for the health and wellness of employees. There is a treadmill desk available for signup, a fitness center that includes showers, bikes available in the parking lot for rides, a run club on Fridays and even a meditation room complete with a comfy chair, dim lights and headphones for anyone who needs a few minutes to de-stress or re-charge during the day.
When asked what will happen if Accredited Investors continues to grow and outgrows its sustainable space, Heupel says the company hopes to figure out a way to stay and continue being a good business committed to also being a good citizen.
5200 West 73rd Street, Edina, MN 55439