the business of sustainability: make your office eco-friendly in 6 easy steps
Nowadays, adopting an environmentally friendly lifestyle has become so much easier. There are numerous alternatives to single-use items, many DIY solutions for zero-waste living, as well as a number of campaigns raising awareness and promoting a sustainable driven culture.
Making eco-friendly everyday choices at work can have a great impact on the environment. Below, are our experts’ tips that can help make your office more eco-friendly, and encourage your employees to lead a zero-waste lifestyle.
But first, here’s why the perfect time to start taking green steps is now!
How does this impact my business?
Being eco-friendly is not only a great noble initiative, but also a great business move. There are 3 main takeaways your company gets from participating in the green movement:
- Productivity and efficiency: Research has shown that working in natural light increases productivity by 15%. Moreover, including healthy habits and changes in your lifestyle, such as walking and spending your working hours in fresher air, improves the mood and energizes the body.
- Reputation: Having a bad reputation, especially when it comes to the environment, can be risky. Supporting environmental causes and improving your companies’ own carbon footprint, especially with climate change being a trending topic, is a strategic marketing move. Being known as an environmentally responsible company raises your company’s reputation, which is the main attribute that attract clients in the current moment.
- Morale and team spirit: Designing fun “green” challenges as part of the business’ CSR program will increase employees’ self-image, environmental awareness and social responsibility. Moreover, sharing in activities, like designing an eco-friendly office or carpooling, will bring the employees closer and hence, increase their team spirit.
6 Ways to Make Your Office Environmentally Friendly
Now that you have grasped the strategic importance of going green, it’s time to take action. The following six tips are our experts’ suggestions on how to make your office more eco-friendly.
- Embrace natural light: Wherever there is enough natural light in the room, encourage your employees to turn off the light. Moreover, always make sure all lights are turned off when the office is empty.
- Go digital: Cut on using paper as much as possible. Turn most documents into a digital form. Not only will this save a lot of trees, it will also clear up so much desk space as well as your archives.
- A plant for every desk: Improve indoor air quality as well as your employees’ mood with a small plant. Plants filter the air and bring more oxygen in the room, which prevents illnesses such as asthma and protects against indoor chemicals caused by office furniture.
- Beware of over-air-conditioning: Are you one of those people who freeze in office spaces during the summer? Don’t worry, you’re not sick. The building is most probably over-air-conditioned. Cut down on energy and save a lot of money by turning off the AC in empty rooms, or raising its temperature.
- Stop using disposable containers: Encourage the use of eco-friendly, reusable, biodegradable alternatives to single-use products, such as:
- Metal or silicone straws instead of plastic straws.
- Reusable mugs and glass cups instead of plastic cups.
- Metal or bamboo cutlery instead of plastic cutlery.
- Encourage each employee to bring their own cotton towel, instead of wasting dozens of paper towels everyday.
- Encourage carpooling: Carbon emissions resulting from car exhaust are amongst the top three causes of air pollution. The less cars on the streets, the better. Green commuting solutions such as carpooling, biking, walking, or taking public transportation will decrease your company’s carbon footprint.
Caring for the environment can be manifested in small steps that can be done on a daily basis. Installing recycling bins to separate office garbage is a great initiative, however, it is rather passive and cliché. Instead, encouraging more active and creative behaviors can actually make a great difference to your business and among your employees.