How Green Office Practices Lead to Higher Productivity

Fri, Sep 14, 2012

6. Misc.

Since “going green” is about preserving resources while striving to create methods to do things in a more productive way, it’s probably not that much of a shocker that green offices lead to higher productivity. However, what you may not know is that this is not just an assumption; that there is actually solid data to support this fact.

As a matter of fact, according to an article published on the Business News Daily website, people who work for companies that apply eco-friendly practices tend to be 16 percent more productive than those do not.

So, what can you do at your office to reduce your own carbon footprint while increasing the drive of the people who work there? Here are five great tips:

Use less paper. Because paper is made from trees and trees do wonders for preserving the air in our atmosphere, it probably makes sense that we would want to use as little of it as possible. You can do this in your office by printing on both the front and back sides of paper, if you need to print at all. We say that because, these days, a lot of what can be communicated or needs to be documented can be sent via email, whether it’s with a staff member or to a potential client outside of the office. You can even use DocuSign.com or e-signature.com to get contracts signed and PayPal to send invoices or make payments.

Unplug it. Did you know that laptops require roughly half of the energy that a desktop does to run? Plus, some laptops have batteries that can go for a couple of hours without being plugged into an outlet. When you’re trying to find ways to keep your utility bills down, it definitely proves to be a good move to not leave the office at the end of the day without unplugging what doesn’t need to remain plugged in overnight such as lamps, copiers and yes, computers.

Encourage green-living. Some offices create an environment that speaks to “living green”. There are plants on the desks (to pull toxins out of the air), filters on the water faucets, natural lighting from windows are preferred to actual light fixtures and also recycling bins that are put into the break rooms.

Open your windows. During the summer months, going without air conditioning may be a bit of a stretch, but during the fall and winter, try and keep the use of central air (and heat) down to a minimum. Instead, open up some windows. It’s a great way to clear out the stale air in the office, while bringing some fresh air in.

Reward green efforts. Contests and giveaways are always effective tools to keep a staff motivated and inspired. Maybe hold a carpool drive. Ask for your staff to submit ideas for the best ways to be more energy-efficient. Hold cook-offs and bake-offs where prizes are given to the favorite dishes that were made with organic ingredients. Have a contest to see who can do their job, productively, for the longest without using any paper products. If you’re recruiting new employees, ask your management staff to go on websites like LinkedIn and HirePulse for ideas on how to find the best people to interview using the least amount of fuel and money. The possibilities are endless. Just remember that when you encourage creativity, you inspire productivity. One way or another that always makes things “greener”.

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