Going green

For the planet – and your business

Nov 28, 2019 | Feature

The importance of a greener office and how it can be put into practice

According to Government statistics, in Britain almost a fifth of greenhouse gas emissions come from businesses. Couple this with the amount of materials used and waste produced, and one thing becomes very clear – all businesses have a responsibility to become more sustainable. We’ve had a think about some of the ways you can start, or continue, your sustainability journey.

Make sustainability a business goal

Over 40% of young workers say they want to work for an environmentally responsible company. The very clear message here is that the millennial workforce do not want environmental issues to be kicked down the road, and to avoid estrangement with these young and energetic employees, businesses need to step up.

Along with financial targets, map out some ‘green’ targets – putting the two side by side show that you’re committed to protecting your business and the planet. Approach these green targets in the same way you would any business project, by creating plans on how to make these goals a reality. Being able to show that you are taking steps to bettering yourself will be a tick in the box for prospective employees, and is becoming a necessity not a nicety.

Reduce, reuse, recycle

A fancy, shiny office space with brand-new equipment is nice, but the constant production and disposal of new furniture has an impact on the planet. According to Reyooz, a website designed to find and repurpose office furniture, businesses in the UK spend over £500 million per year disposing of over £2 billion of furniture and supplies that could have been reused. It’s a waste of materials and a waste of money. So, instead of buying brand new furniture, take a look and see if you can recycle any – Reyooz is a great place to start. You could even upcycle some furniture that’s a little worse for wear, giving it a new personality and lease of life which will make your office space feel really unique.

The little extras

Small gestures are proven to boost colleague morale, and providing people with reusable water bottles, hot drinks cups or tote bags not only supports the reduction of single use plastics but helps to make colleagues feel good. You can also consider how to give a little extra back when looking at company benefits. Many people appreciate cycle-to-work schemes, discounted train passes and voluntary hours, which can be used for beach cleans or community litter-picks.

Become a ‘B Corp’

If you’re serious about sustainability, you can become a certified ‘B Corporation’. This rigorous assessment looks at how a business’s operation and model affects the environment, employees and community. B Corps are “legally required to consider the impact of their decisions on their workers, customers, suppliers, community and the environment”. Joining this community tells your customers and employees that you are willing to hold yourself accountable. It’s a real commitment, and something you should be very proud to shout about.

Food for thought

If you have a canteen, it’s a great place to make some positive changes. Obviously, you can’t (and shouldn’t) dictate what people eat, but you can get people enthused about sustainability without asking for a lifestyle overhaul. Vegetarian food options lower the consumption of animal products, which are a major player in carbon emissions and water waste. You could consider providing free fruit, and introducing a meat-free Monday scheme, or reduce the amount of meat options you offer. Anything you do can only have a positive impact. You can also try sourcing your products locally, so you know that everything you use is good quality and ethically produced.

It’s simple maths. Investing in sustainability is not only beneficial to the future of our planet, but the future of your business too. It doesn’t require a culture overhaul or a huge budget; in fact, it’s quite the opposite!

You may also like…

Cyber Security

With millions of people around the UK working from home it’s no surprise that we’ve been online more than normal. According to infosecurity magazine in April, there was an overall Internet usage increase of 17%. From Zoom calls for work to FaceTime with friends, people are getting better acquainted with the virtual world.

We see IC Allison Cary

In the second of our series, we caught up with Allison Cary, Internal Communications Lead at Voyage Care, about the ever-evolving role of internal communications in Social Care.

Tone of Voice

COVID-19 has highlighted many things. The British public love banana bread, toilet rolls don’t grow on trees, and how you say something is as important as what you’re saying.

We See IC

Welcome to the first in a series where we grab a cuppa and settle in for a virtual chat with some amazing IC experts.

We caught up with Jen Lock, Senior Internal Communications Manager at Direct Line Group, on all things communications and COVID-19.

Return to the workplace

Internal comms teams will be pivotal in the gradual move back to some sort of workplace ‘normality’. Here are our key points to consider as you start that journey.

That’s the spirit!

Maybe it’s a particular British thing, but we love a good wartime metaphor. When our ‘backs are against the wall’, facing ‘our darkest hour’ us plucky Brits come out fighting.

As we battle with this horrible virus the tone of the national conversation is full of 1940’s references, harking back to a time when we collectively stood together, shoulder to shoulder to beat the forces of evil by keeping calm and carrying on.

World Sleep Day

Friday 13 March is World Sleep Day – yes, it’s a thing.

With the average person spending a third of their lives asleep, it’s fair to say that sleep is instrumental for our overall wellbeing – physically and mentally.

Love what you do

Work is about so much more than just the job you do On the face of it, entering awards can cost both time and money, so it’s easy to talk yourself out of it. But in reality, entering – and winning – awards is great for business on many levels. Here’s why it’s more...

Banish Blue Monday

The third Monday in January has been officially dubbed ‘Blue Monday’. It’s classed as the most depressing day of the year. Many people’s resolutions have fallen off a cliff, the longer month is taking its toll on people’s finances and the weather is dreary. On top of that, there’s work.

January is the time that people often take stock of their careers and the job-hopping begins. Here are a few ideas to engage your employees right from the off this year…

Hello 2020

Happy New Year! On the face of it, entering awards can cost both time and money, so it’s easy to talk yourself out of it. But in reality, entering – and winning – awards is great for business on many levels. Here’s why it’s more than just an accolade. Measure for...