Inspiring Your Co-Workers to Go Green

Mon, Aug 30, 2010

Employee Involvement

A green workplace requires a team effort. It doesn’t matter how motivated you are to turn your business green; if your co-workers don’t share in your vision, your attempts will prove rather unsuccessful. Every company has that employee who just doesn’t care. He or she uses paper like it’s going out of style, fills up a garbage can like it’s a race to get to the top, and considers recycling to be a foreign concept. The first obstacle you have in your way of going green is that person. Inspire your co-workers to support your environmental goals by putting the following tips into action.

Be Passionate

Passion is infectious. If others see your enthusiasm for going green, then perhaps they too, will become enthusiastic. Let them know why you are passionate about green living. Is it because you want to save money, or improve your health, or conserve energy? Tell them! In fact, let the whole office know why you are passionate. Once others understand your devotion to transforming the workplace into a green environment, they might develop a passion for it as well.

Inform Them

Some of your co-workers, no matter how “smart” of a company you might work for, still probably think the only meaning behind the word “green” is a color of the rainbow. Teach them the true definition of “green living.” Don’t take anyone’s knowledge for granted. One of the main reasons some people do not care about the environment is because they don’t know why they should. Educate them with the information you know about going green, and explain how they play a direct role in the environment’s health and function. Remind them that every action they make each day has some type of impact on the planet.

Set an Example

In order to be a true environmentalist, you must practice what you preach. Motivate your co-workers to make green decisions by making them yourself. Bring recycling bins and eco-friendly products into the office, turn the lights off as soon as you leave a room, and suggest to walk or ride bicycles to your lunch break destinations. You might be surprised how large of an impact such small actions can have on your co-workers, and on your business as a whole.

Have a Contest

Nothing motivates a true businessperson more than a little healthy competition. Inspire your co-workers to reach their maximum money and energy-saving potential by posing the idea of a challenge. Work in teams, or solo, to determine who is the most successful at the following tasks, for example: using the least amount of printer paper, saving money, and using the least electricity. Be sure to reward the most green-conscious employees, as well as those who have made strong efforts, with small, eco-friendly prizes.

By Kristen Kubilus. Kristen Kubilus is a Journalism and Fine Arts student at The College of New Jersey.  You can contact Kristen at kekubilus@hotmail.com.

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