Did you hear the news? Going green in the workplace is the new hot trend in the business world. Turns out that using environmentally-friendly practices in and around the office benefits both the planet and your business’s bottom line.
But I’m not going to lie to you — building a green culture in your workplace goes beyond simply putting a blue recycling bin in the break room. It takes a dedicated team to plan, implement, and actively participate in the program. Luckily, even if you can’t afford EV charging stations or a composter, there are a host of simple solutions that will go a long way in crafting an environmentally-friendly company image and can even put a few dollars back in the budget.
1) Plants are your friend
This is your literal solution to going green, and a darn good one to boot! Office plants help to improve air quality by reducing airborne toxins and emitting clean oxygen. They’re also a great way for employees to showcase their personalities — through plants!
2) Print less, read more
PC Load Letter? What on Earth does that mean? Well, it means your office printer seems to disagree with your need to print something. There is always a way to use less paper in the workplace. When it doubt, email it out!
3) Buy eco-friendly paper
For those rare occasions that you do need to print something, always insist on using printer paper that’s made from recycled materials or that has been made with sustainability in mind. Then explore the ‘print double-sided’ feature, so you’re using less paper and, therefore, spending less money each month.
4) Go solar
Yeah, yeah — a solar company pushing for you to go solar. It’s inevitable. But energy independence is also one of the best decisions your business can make. Consumers love forward-thinking businesses, and you’d be doing yourself a favor by taking advantage of all the generous solar rebates and incentives currently available.
5) LED bulbs for the win!
Consider switching ALL of your office’s lighting to LED. The bulbs themselves use a fraction of the energy that traditional incandescents use, and they last much, much longer.
6) Install Motion Detectors
Complement your LEDs with a couple of motion sensors to really maximize your energy-cuts. There are bound to be less-trafficked areas in your office or building. You’d be surprised how much energy is being wasted when no one is even there!
7) Use Alternative Transportation
This isn’t always the easiest green solution to implement, but the old green staples of carpooling and using public transit are still as effective as ever. Not near a bus stop or rail line? Consider providing bicycles to your employees so they can, at least, have green transportation for their lunch hour. (This would complement that exercise initiative you’ve been planning as well).
8) Working from home
It’s every employee’s dream-come-true, but it also is — in most cases — good for productivity too. Think about all the time folks spend commuting to and from work. The employees are saving money on transportation costs; the environment is benefiting from fewer cars on the road, and, come on, who’s going to argue with less traffic?
9) Green Cleaning Products
Not using toxic chemicals in the workplace? Sounds like a good idea to me. Your employees will also feel more cherished if greater care is given to maintaining a healthy workplace. Have a talk with your cleaning company and encourage them to only use green products.
10) Recycle, Recycle, Recycle
Remember when I said that you’d have to do more than simply placing a blue bin in the break room? You have to fill it as well. Think about all the opportunities beyond simply recycling paper that you have in your office. Are you recycling cardboard from packages? What about the cups used at the watercooler? You’d be surprised just what all you can recycle in an office space, but it’s important to make sure your employees know what and where they can recycle.