Training Your Employees to Go Green

Tue, Feb 7, 2012

6. Misc.

There are many reasons why businesses these days are choosing to take on more environmental responsibility. In some cases, it leads to financial savings by reducing waste and pollution through recycling and conservation efforts. And often, it improves the public image of a company and helps to bring in more business from consumers that value green business. Of course, it could also provide a big boost to the collective conscience of a company, making not only the management, but also employees feel good about the establishment they work for. But if you’d like to really get your employees on board with feeling great about going green, here are just a few tactics you can use to train them to take on a bigger environmental role around the office (and possibly even in their own lives).

The first step is to impart knowledge, not only about your own efforts to go green as a company, but also about the eco-friendly movement in general. Employees need to know why this idea is important, what it can mean for your company (both in the office and in the business community), and how it can benefit them as individuals. With a greater understanding of green living, its goals and inception, will come an increased desire to do everything possible to ensure that the world remains livable for future generations. So you can start by making information available to your employees through emails, webinars, and company meetings.

Next you’ll want to start instating eco-friendly policies around the office. You can do a lot on your own by installing energy-saving CFL or LED lights, low-flow toilets, and even aerated motion-sensor faucets (just to name a few possibilities). But when it comes to a company-wide effort, individual employees must take some responsibility, including using the recycling bins you provide, making efforts to shut down computer equipment when not in use, and finding ways to conserve whenever possible (like posting presentations online for later perusal rather than handing out paper pamphlets). But of course, you can ask employees to take it a step further.

For one thing, you can set up a team of employees to do research and come up with ideas for the company to take on more green initiatives. They can explore options for sustainability, conservation, and even alternative forms of energy. And they can also work to involve employees in volunteer efforts and outreach programs as a way to give something back to the community that supports their (and your) business. This group can also keep employees up-to-date on the impact their efforts are having, either through the use of surveys by

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