Are you worried about sustainability and the environment and wish your business could be part of the solution, not the problem?
All over the world, businesses are acting decisively to improve their sustainability. The momentum is there and all you have to do is get involved!
Get started on the right path with these 4 green ideas.
1. Get your team on board
The best intentions in the world won't go anywhere if your team isn't excited about them too.
Why not kick things off with a team meeting or an outdoor event? Your team members can have some input into sustainability improvements your business can take.
By contributing their ideas, staff will gain an invaluable sense of ownership over the project.
Smaller companies can set up a coordinating team to drive progress
Bigger companies can employ a sustainability officer
Enroll key staff in a sustainability leadership course
2. Conduct a sustainability audit
You need to know how your business is going now if you want to improve.
Is your electricity supplier mainly renewable? Can you install solar panels instead?
How much water are you using? Can you switch to sensor-activated taps and toilets?
What percentage of the waste is recycled? Does e-waste get taken to a specialized center? Can you set up a composting area?
Do your suppliers follow ethical and sustainability guidelines?
Can you buy recycled furniture or equipment rather than new ones?
3. Encourage behaviour change
Though the biggest changes have to come from the top, individuals can also make sustainable changes to their own behavior.
Remote work: Allow staff to work from home.
Commuting: Encourage or even incentivize employees to take public transport, carpools, or bikes to work.
Flexible leave: Staff can use this to volunteer on sustainability initiatives.
Stop single-use plastic: Include a reusable coffee cup or water bottle in the new employee onboarding kit.
Reduce paper usage: Provide staff with a monthly printing allowance.
Green employee reward: Highlight outstanding sustainability efforts.
4. Engage with the wider community
Your business can achieve a much broader impact by engaging with other businesses and the wider community.
See if your trade association has any sustainability initiatives in place. If not, suggest a few ideas. Start some friendly competition with similar businesses in a race to zero emissions and waste.
Attend sustainability fairs or conferences to share experiences and resources.
Produce an annual sustainability report to increase transparency and develop trust in your business.
Support local community initiatives and organizations by donating money or allowing staff to volunteer.
Test your knowledge!
You're the chief sustainability officer and one of your first tasks is to commission a sustainability audit. A couple of weeks later your team hands you the results and they don't look good.
Unfortunately, the vast majority of employees are still driving their own car to work. This is a significant barrier to achieving your goal of minimising your company's transportation emissions.
The sustainability team has come up with several possible solutions. Which one is NOT suitable?