by Brenna Timm

Going Green, reducing waste, and finding eco-friendly solutions is influencing businesses everywhere. However, it can be very hard to find the best solutions that don’t detract from your productivity or make a dent in the budget. There are simple solutions that can help your business or workspace become a little friendlier to the environment. Let’s explore the possibilities.

Work-style Changes

There are many different ways to change a company’s carbon-foot print by adjusting the way things are run. Going paperless is commonly the most popular and simple to do. We are already in the digital age where most business is done on computers and online. Making the switch to go paperless in most or all aspects of your business can help. This will show customers that you not only care about the environment, but that you care about their organizational needs as well. Another easy way to reduce is to use less heating. Having the thermostat run at 75 degrees at all times is taxing on your furnace as well as your pocketbook. Humans can stay relatively comfortable from 65 to 70 degrees. Even if you need to bring a light jacket, changing the thermostat can bring great savings in your budget and waste. There are also thermostats that can be set to a schedule, so if there is no one normally in the office overnight or on the weekends, the setting can be much lower than normal. Consider encouraging your employees and co-workers to find new ways to get to work. Car-pooling, public transport, or cycling are all wonderful options that can provide opportunity. If it is within your power, you could make these things goals or events within the business to gain more interest. For some more ideas, check this out.
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Reuse and Re-purpose

If your company decides to reduce their paper use or go completely paperless, items like sign-in sheets or bulleting boards could become an issue. However, there are some good options. A laminated piece of paper or a small white board can be used for sign-in sheets and in-and-out calendars. For bulletin boards or meetings, large whiteboards or electronics can be an option. Records can still be kept of these things. Either have someone log the data into a computer at the end of the day, or take a picture and save it to a file. In the breakroom, going through paper cups and coffee cups is easy, but these can leave a lot of waste behind. Instead, we can consider using ceramic, plastic, or glass mugs and cups. While it can be more expense at first, these items will reduce your waste production in the long run.

Green Office Staples

Office supplies are hard to make green at times. Air fresheners are sometimes a must and napkins and bathroom supplies are hard to make reusable. Having desk and office plants are a great natural source of air freshening. They are simple, require little care, and can add a pleasant feeling to an office space. For ‘only one use’ supplies, there are many options. All you have to do is google reusable office supplies and hundreds of businesses appear. As long as you are not breaking your budget and do your research, this is a great option. Some ideas used in the home can even be used in the office. Check out our blog about Green Cleaning at Home to see what can be crossed over into the work space.