Businesses that are "going green" are becoming more and more commonplace. Regardless of your political beliefs or opinions regarding the "global warming" concept, few can argue that being environmentally aware will leave the world a better place. Whether a company is simply jumping on the green bandwagon, or are honestly sensitive about environmental issues is really irrelevant. Consumers like green businesses, and shaping your business to promote being "eco-friendly" makes sense from a public relations standpoint.
Not surprisingly, many businesses that have taken the steps to "go green" are also discovering that going green often saves them another kind of green (as in the "money" kind of green). For example, consider hotels that are allowed by long-term guests to only launder sheets and towels every other day rather than every single day. The hotel is presenting an environmentally-friendly face, while at the same time saving money on their bottom line. They save in both staff time and cleaning materials by laundering less frequently, and all while presenting an environmentally-concerned image for their company. .
There are a number of steps that almost any business can take to become more environmentally-friendly. Here are just a few... Power Management and Conservation Encourage energy conservation throughout the company. Be sure that offices are equipped with energy-efficient light bulbs, and purchase equipment and supplies that conserve power. Encourage staff to turn off lights and equipment in offices and conference rooms when they are not in use .
Cut travel costs by using virtual conferencing tools. When feasible, allow employees to telecommute (work from home) on certain days or a number of days per week. Statistics show that employees who telecommute are actually more productive, and work longer hours than those who commute to an office each day. Telecommuting can also reduce a company's "carbon footprint". A carbon footprint refers to the amount of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gasses your choices create.
Encourage your staff to recycle. Provide recycling bins for soda and drink containers. Encourage staff to use the back side of old printed materials for notes and scratch paper. Use double-sided printing for reports, and use a digital infrastructure that allows documents to be transferred digitally to reduce printing costs. Corporate motives can be questioned, but it really doesn't matter whether a company truly cares about the planet, or if they are "going green" simply for a cost savings.... because no matter what the motives, at the end of the day green businesses will help leave the planet a healthier place for future generations.
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