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How to go green in the office

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For many businesses in the 21st century, becoming more eco-friendly is high on the priority list.

There are many reasons for this – a greater level of environmental awareness, wanting to impress clients and the financial implications, to name but a few.

If doing your bit to help Mother Nature was one of your New Years’ resolutions or you simply just want to reduce your waste, then here are some tips to help you on your way.

It’s a team effort

Achieving the aim of going green is easier said than done and it certainly requires a team effort, rather than just one office manager trying to power through on their own. For this reason, it’s important to convince all members of the workforce to pull together and move in the same direction towards an eco-friendly future.

This is partly down to the fact that, ultimately, your success relies on the cooperation of your employees. If, for example, you choose to cut down on your paper consumption by forbidding personal use of the printer, the only way you are going to be able to realistically enforce this is if everyone buys into the reasons why you are no longer permitting them to print out recipes for dinner or money-off vouchers for the theatre.

Invest

If your office equipment is getting on a bit, then chances are it’s not as energy-efficient as it could be. With this in mind, eventually you will reach a tipping point when it makes more financial sense to invest in new equipment and make your money back over time through the cash saved by using less power-intensive technology.

Most devices come with efficiency ratings these days, so it should be easy to figure out which models are the best for minimal electricity consumption.

This approach shouldn’t just be taken with computers, either. Take a look in communal areas like the kitchen – maybe a new oven, microwave or dishwasher could pay dividends? In addition to this, you could also look at replacing your lightbulbs with new, eco-friendly LEDs.

Change your habits

Another collaborative effort required here, but getting everyone into the mindset of not wasting energy can make a big difference to your carbon footprint and your bills.

Ensuring the last person in the office turns the lights off so they are not blazing away all night is a good place to start, while shutting computers down properly instead of just logging them off and leaving them on standby is another step you can take.

Introducing recycling bins around the office is another example of good practice and further emphasises to your workforce the goals you are trying to achieve. If you encourage employees to separate their waste, then this goes towards breeding the culture among your workforce of doing that little bit extra to look after the environment.

While one person doing this will only make a small dent in green ambitions of your company, a wider adoption of positive behaviour like this will result in a noticeable difference.