Today, there’s much focus on sustainability and environmental responsibility for businesses. Eco-friendly business solutions are no longer just a trend but a fundamental part of corporate strategy. Companies that develop and implement sustainability initiatives not only contribute to a healthier planet, they can also gain significant economic and reputational benefits.
Here’s how your company can incorporate eco-friendly solutions into your operations.
1. Update your lighting. LED lighting uses less energy than previous lighting technologies and lasts longer. This allows you to spend less money on replacement lights and keeps them out of landfills.
2. Update your insulation. If you’re in an old building, updating insulation may be a great way to reduce energy costs.
3. Rely more on natural light. Energy-efficient windows and doors can allow natural light into your office, shop, or manufacturing facility. And for those days that are darker, install photosensitive lights. That way, they’ll turn on automatically when you need them.
4. Re-paint your walls. Painting your walls with brighter colors can help reflect light around your office space. A more colorful environment can also improve employee morale, especially in climates that experience significant darkness during winter.
5. Create a bike- or walk-to-work program. For years, West Bend has offered a bike-to-work program. Associates can earn rewards based on the number of miles ridden. We even have several group rides per year where we meet at a local coffee shop and enjoy coffee and camaraderie.
6. Partner with a collection company. West Bend partners with a company that collects food waste and food-soiled paper supplies. Examples of the items collected include:
- Meat, poultry, seafood, and pasta
- Waxed cardboard and milk cartons
- Napkins and paper towels
- Coffee grounds, coffee filters, and tea bags
7. Support community initiatives. Fiscally supporting your community or volunteering can make a huge difference. Re-planting trees in storm- or disease-damaged areas can restore beauty to your community, promote a habitat for wildlife, and combat urban heat islands. Another example of contributing would be a trash cleanup day. It’s incredible how much trash can litter our roadways and neighborhoods.
8. Consider a hybrid working schedule. Allowing your employees to work remotely a day or two a week has a variety of environmental benefits, including:
- Reduced commute emissions
- Less lunchroom food waste
- Minimized lighting, heating, and cooling needs
- Less onsite printing of meeting agendas and other documents
9. Consider using recycled paper. While paper usage in offices has decreased, especially after the pandemic, there’s likely room for reduction in your office. As an alternative to buying new white paper, consider purchasing recycled paper. The benefits of recycled paper include:
- It's produced using less water and electricity.
- It creates less solid waste.
- It can be recycled four to five times.
- The quality is just as good as non-recycled paper.
10. Improve your break room. Traditional office break rooms can be a significant source of waste. Here are some ways you can improve yours.
- Encourage reusable mugs and cups.
- Look into a composting program for food scraps, coffee grounds, and filters.
- Discontinue use of plastic silverware and look for other options.