Running a business that is “ethical” can mean many things, from how you source products to your manner of working. Ethics can require a debate into the wee small hours, but this isn’t an article about semantics. This is to give you some pointers on how to make that business of yours make the change into a fully functioning, 21st century model of sustainability. Having an environmentally ethical business requires doing many things, but you can start by doing the basics right now. Here are some guidelines to get on the green pathway.
Reduce The Amount Of Paper You Use
Another benefit of the widespread use of computers is that steps can be made to encourage the office to completely “go digital”.
With more and more companies spreading the word of using less paper, take the initiative and send more emails than letters, use e invoicing software to bill your clients, and carry your tablet around as an extension of your body. It’s lighter than carrying piles of paper anyway!
Source Local Produce For Your Foodstuffs
If your office or business has a canteen, providing locally sourced produce and selling drinks that are fair trade will go a way to being more ethical. Source products from local farmers and ethical sellers. This reduces the carbon footprint and helps support local businesses.
Work From Home
This one will probably go down wonderfully with your employees! Ask staff to work from home one day a week and communicate via an instant chat or messenger service. By doing so, there is less staff using their cars, using less paper and costing the business less money overall. This is very handy if you have limited office space. Another advantage to this is that the staff members are likely to get more done from home as they will be more refreshed due to not needing to commute.
Don’t Go On “Standby”
Computers are the absolute focal point of an office or business. It is hard to imagine anyone going into an office of the 21st century and not use computers. Reducing your energy usage from a computer can be from switching the monitor off when you leave your desk. Or, more importantly, shutting down your computer completely when you leave the office for the day. Don’t just put it on standby, as a lot of offices recommend. You can also set your computer to run on energy saving settings or use a smart power strip.
Encourage Car Shares
Asking employees to use their car one less day a week, or to have a carpooling scheme will benefit the environment. In this way, staff is being more economical in their cost of transport. It will also encourage better-working relationships as they are spending more time together.
There are plenty of ways to go green in the office. The important thing is to make small steps in the right direction if you haven’t got anything in place. The more you gradually build up, the easier it is to make small changes as you go, instead of making massive changes.