We all have a part to play in saving the planet but a common misconception is that huge changes to our lives are the only way to achieve this. As a business owner, there is a responsibility to ensure that you and your team are part of the environmental solution, not the problem. We have noted some recommended small steps you can take to reduce your office carbon footprint.
Educate your office
To capture the attention of your employees, you need to explain to your office what changes are going to be made and the direct impact this will have on the environment. Crucially, you should add best practice for a green office into your new employee inductions.
And remember; going green can be fun!
Really go green with office plants
Office plants not only help the environment, they help your employees too! They reduce noise and dust in the office space, as well as increasing productivity by as much as 15% according to Tim Oldman, CEO of Leesman. (survey of over 200,000 employees worldwide, the largest independent database of workplace effectiveness data).
Cycle to work scheme
Offered by many companies and celebrated by staff; the ‘cycle to work’ scheme is a great first step in cutting down on the commuter carbon emissions of your employees. Find out more about it here.
The single easiest way to reduce your carbon footprint; harness a remote workforce. Almost one quarter of the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions comes from transport and with an average annual commuter total of 4,344 miles, remote working has become a priority for environmentally conscious businesses. Check out our blog on how to manage a remote assistant - or any employee - remotely here.
Encourage your employees to only utilise the printer if really necessary. If employees want to share documents, the Cloud should be their first point of call.
Company coffee cups
How many of your employees rock up in the morning with a paper coffee cup? A good way to take a conscious step towards waste reduction is reusable coffee cups. There are plenty of ethical and environmentally friendly suppliers such as SolCups, KeepCups and FrankGreen. Surprise your employees with a branded Christmas gift from the company as a good will gesture. A bonus for you; free advertising for your business!
Monthly green challenges
A great way to bring your team together is it set monthly “green challenges”. This can be anything from asking employees to bring in unwanted clothes and donating these to charity/responsible waste disposals to a traditional bake sale fundraiser.
Fully lit empty offices are one of the most obvious examples of the excessive wasted electricity in our cities. Motion-activated lights are the most eco friendly way to guarantee you are only using the electricity you need.
Did you know computers left on ‘sleep mode’ overnight use the same amount of energy than if they were turned on? This is a change that needs to become part of your employees habits, so a few reminders will make all the difference.
Make the task visible with clear labels on bins as to what goes where and colour coding.