How to “Green” a Business

How to “Green” a Business

Image courtesy of Jamie Grill

In today’s world, you can hardly get through without using a portion of at least a few of our Earth’s natural resources. In our busy, fast paced lives we could hardly imagine living without our cell phones or computers to help us out. While some of these items are necessary, there are still ways to incorporate “greener” ways of doing business while still maximizing efficiency.

Making your business “green” simply means that you make choices to try to use your business to bring about a positive change and adopt the idea of environmental sustainability. By conserving resources and cutting down waste your business will in turn be able to feel the effects of the money you can save all the way to the bank.

Ask For Help

To adopt business practices that are more environmentally safe, enlist the help of your employees. Make a statement regarding your adoption of greener practices a part of your company’s mission statement. It is also a good idea to appoint a member of your team to become the head of your “green” committee. Encourage employees to take part in these committees and to give ideas freely. Your employees have the inside knowledge and know what areas that your business can improve in.

Check for Leaks

As a business owner there are many tips that you can adopt in order to make your business greener, no matter what industry you are in. Take the paper towels out of the employee bathrooms and install hand dryers. Make sure there are no leaking taps or running toilets. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, a slow drip can waste more than 3,000 gallons per year.

Reuse, Recycle and buy Refurbished

Instead of throwing out those old office chairs and desks, refurbish them. Many times, all these items need is a new coat of paint or their cushions reupholstered and they will look good as new. Buy earth friendly products, such as refurbished products, if at all possible and find out what suppliers will take back and replace items such as ink and shredded paper.

Log Off

Office equipment accounts for a large part of wasted energy. Turn equipment like faxes and copiers off when not in use and shut down company computers at the end of the day. Reduce the amount of energy and paper your office uses by going paperless. Encourage your employees to use interoffice emails to communicate and change to electronic faxing. If printing is necessary, ask that employees print double sided documents.

Start a Carpool

Incorporate carpooling into your business policies. Ask employees that live closer to one another to begin a carpool and give these workers preferred parking. If possible, offer to let employees telecommute. Another good business practice in the way of transportation is switching your company vehicles to hybrid vehicles or at least more energy efficient makes and models.

Cut Travel Costs

Finally, cut down or eliminate travel costs by using alternate way to hold meetings. Today, computer applications such as Skype, IChat, and GChat use webcams that will allow employees to attend meetings while cutting down on fuel and hotel costs. Additionally, programs such as Second Life create a virtual world where members are actually able to create their own characters who virtually goes into the room and sits down for the meetings.

This article was submitted by Magnus Keith on behalf of The Printer Depo, a supplier of refurbished HP printers.

Filed in: Going Green

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